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The first China-Central Asia Summit was held on May 18 and 19 in Xi’an. What achievements have been made on trade and economic fronts? What measures will be taken to promote trade connectivity between China and Central Asian countries?(2023-05-25)

The China-Central Asia Summit is the first diplomatic event hosted by China this year, which is of great practical and historical significance. The Summit concluded with a series of important trade and economic outcomes. MOFCOM established a ministerial-level meeting mechanism with Central Asian countries’ ministries responsible for trade and signed multilateral cooperation documents on deepening trade and economic cooperation, digital trade and infrastructure and project construction, fully demonstrating the firm resolve of all parties in building a closer China-Central Asia community with a shared future.

In order to promote trade and economic cooperation with Central Asian countries, we will focus our work on the following six areas.

First, development of new forms of trade. We will continue to leverage the bilateral and multilateral cooperation mechanism including the China-Central Asia Meeting of the Ministers of Economy and Trade and seek to enhance the quantity and quality of practical cooperation between China and Central Asian countries. We will encourage construction of overseas warehouses and support Central Asian businesses in selling quality products on the China market via Chinese e-commerce platforms.

Second, continued empowerment by innovation. We will conduct digital trade with Central Asian countries, push for alignment of rules, mutual recognition of standards and digital infrastructure connectivity, share experience in artificial intelligence, big data and 5G, and pursue digitization at a quicker pace so as to jointly create new prospects for digital trade cooperation.

Third, security and stability of regional industrial and supply chains. We will advance development of cross-border infrastructure, step up cooperation on oil, gas and new energy minerals and push forward construction of cross-border pipelines. We will deepen agricultural cooperation and import more quality agricultural products from Central Asia.

Fourth, cooperation within the multilateral framework. Committed to true multilateralism, China stands ready to strengthen collaboration with Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan within the WTO framework and support Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan in joining the WTO at an early date. Thank you.