August 28 was Anhui Day and Gujinggong Liquor Corporate Day at the China Pavilion of the Expo 2017 in Astana, Kazakhstan. The day had a theme of "New Technology, Green Energy, Win-win Cooperation".
Some 160 representatives from Chinese and Kazakh government institutions, business chambers and associations, companies, and national pavilions of Expo 2017 attended the opening ceremony, including Tong Huaiwei, vice-chairman of the CPPCC Anhui Provincial Committee, Yu Jianlong, secretary-general of the China Chamber of International Commerce, Liu Jiangping, charge d'affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Kazakhstan, Talgat Doskenov, vice-chairman of the Atameken National Union of Entrepreneurs of Kazakhstan,and Aidyn Bayedilov，the general director of the Kazakhstan Investment Cooperation Agency.
Vice-Chairman Tong Huaiwei said Anhui province, an important player in China's dynamic Yangtze River Delta economy, is one of the major nodes along the Belt and Road and the Yangtze River economic belt, and has stayed at the forefront of the opening up of China's inland regions.
Tong said that in the new round of industrial revolution, Anhui's strategic emerging industries, including new-type display devices, new energy vehicles, intelligent voice devices and robotics, have advanced to leading levels in China and throughout the world, and added that the province anticipates becoming an important hub along the Belt and Road.
Tong went on to say that as Anhui and Kazakhstan are complementary to each other economically, there is huge potential for industrial and energy cooperation between them. Through exhibitions, videos and dialogue, the Anhui Day and Gujinggong Liquor Corporate Day will showcase achievements in economic and social development as well as in energy technology and innovation, facilitate economic, trade, technological and cultural exchanges, and promote Anhui inside and outside the Expo and among the Belt and Road countries. It will also set up a broad platform for dialogue and cooperation between Anhui and the rest of the world.
Secretary-General Yu Jianlong said the Astana Expo, centering on the theme of "Future Energy", provides an important platform for countries to display their achievements in the development and utilization of new energy, explore energy cooperation plans, and promote sustainable growth.
Yu said that both the Yangtze and Huaihe rivers flow through Anhui, connecting the inland province to the sea and bringing Anhui its traditional economic prosperity. As early as the Ming and Qing dynasties, businesspeople from Anhui had expanded trade to Southeast Asia, Japan and Europe; and, as the saying goes, "There is no business without Hui people".
Today, Anhui is one of the top provinces with rich resources for innovation, and also one of the two provinces selected for a pilot provincial innovation program. It has already made remarkable achievements in new energy and new technology.
Yu expressed his hope that Anhui will take advantage of the Expo to further expand pragmatic cooperation with Kazakhstan and other neighboring countries, and play a greater role in pushing forward implementation of the Belt and Road initiative.
The Song Dynasty's Neo-Confucianism, the Qing Dynasty's Tongcheng school of literature, and China's national treasure Peking Opera all originated in Anhui, said Charge d'Affaires Liu Jiangping, who also recited a poem about the beautiful scenery of the Yellow Mountain as part of a vivid account of Anhui's profound history and culture as well as its charming natural landscapes. Anhui entrepreneurs' bravery, pioneering spirit and honesty have become part of the Chinese cultural heritage, she added.
Today, Anhui is improving its economic system in the process of opening up, and has forged an outstanding innovation capability. In particular, a cooperation program in new energy vehicles between Anhui and Kazakhstan has made good progress. She believed the Expo will take their cooperation to new levels.
Vice-Chairman Talgat Doskenov said China and Kazakhstan are neighbors that share common interests and development goals. Many excellent companies have forged close ties with Kazahkstan through collaboration programs, he said, adding that there is huge potential for future cooperation.
Doskenov expressed the hope that the two sides will give full play to their unique advantages to enhance tourism cooperation. Governments, business chambers and associations, and other institutions are willing to set up platforms and provide services to facilitate investment and cooperation and help them attain their common goals, he added.
Aidyn Bayedilov, general director of the Kazakhstan Investment Cooperation Agency, said he was shocked by the fast growth and innovation capability of Chery, the Anhui-based carmaker, which has had a strong influence in Kazakhstan.
Innovation is an important concept the Expo aims to convey, he said, adding that he expects China-Kazakhstan cooperation to enter a new stage after the Expo in which various programs turn from theory into reality. He also expressed the hope that the two sides will make breakthroughs from existing frameworks, and seek out more and newer cooperation possibilities.
At the opening ceremony, Secretary-General Yu Jianlong and Wang Feng, deputy Party chief of Gujing Group, jointly unveiled the commemorative Gujinggong liquor for the Expo 2017 in Astana, marking the third time that Gujinggong Liquor, an "Expo ambassador" from the Chinese liquor industry, has appeared at the China Pavilion of the Expo.
Yu said Gujinggong Group, one of the top Chinese companies, has collaborated with the China Pavilion of the Expo three consecutive times in a bid to show the east's beauty as embodied by Chinese liquor. He vowed that the China Pavilion would do its best to help Gujing Group tap the international market, and help Chinese companies go international.
As there are no borders between liquors, cultures, feelings, or communications, Gujinggong Liquor hopes to continue to display the charm of the Chinese liquor culture and help Chinese liquors to reach out to the world, Wang said.
After the ceremony, the Anhui Branch of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade signed cooperation agreements with both the South Kazakhstan's development and reform commission and the Kazakhstan Investment Cooperation Agency. Also, China Energy Engineering Group signed cooperation agreements with Kazakhstan’s new energy association and energy companies.
Before the opening ceremony, Cao Guoqiang, deputy secretary-general of the CPPCC Anhui Provincial Committee, gave a gift of a silk banner to the China Pavilion from Anhui province to thank the pavilion for its efforts in setting up an international platform its support of events organized by the province.