Nearly 100 officials, academics and entrepreneurs from more than 30 countries gathered in Urumqi, capital city of Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, to attend this year’s Xinjiang Development Forum.
The theme of the two-day forum is “Building the Silk Road Economic Belt — Development Opportunity and Choice of Xinjiang”.
The economic belt along the Silk Road is inhabited by nearly 3 billion people and represents the biggest market in the world. And with several new projects approved, Xinjiang is reviving the commercial splendor of the ancient Silk Road. At the forum, representatives from all around the world want a piece of the action.
“When you trade goods, you also trade ideas. And the rest of the world will increasingly see — because of this area being a hub for the Silk Road — the rest of the world is going to see and benefit from the skills, history, and what people have to offer here,” said Stockwell Day, vice chairman of Canada-China Business Council.
The forum encourages participants to exchange ideas on the construction of the core area of the economic belt, connectivity with neighboring countries, regional stability and cultural heritage of the Silk Road — all for the common good.
“I think China is going to share its developments with neighboring countries, in terms of investments, technology development, experience of social development. All these are beneficial for the member countries,” said Afrasiab Khattak, former senator of Pakistan.
As Xinjiang will be the bridgehead of the Silk Road economic belt, the region will become more proactive in promoting cooperation with other countries.
Xinjiang has seen fast economic development and improved living standards over the past decade. The region’s GDP growth has been in double-digits since 2010. The forum today provides the participants with a sound prospect of how will they benefit from Xinjiang’s prosperity.