Macao to strengthen the ‘Belt and Road’ role by helping international infrastructure development

The opening ceremony of the 8th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum

The Government is looking forward to advancing Macao’s platform functions as the city assists in the effort to connect infrastructure and facilities in countries and places covered by the “Belt and Road” initiative.

Speaking today at the opening ceremony of the 8th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum, the Chief Executive, Mr Chui Sai On, said the Forum was a key platform for Macao to facilitate development of the “Belt and Road” initiative.

The huge potential for development – via the international cooperation envisaged under the initiative – also provided Macao with further opportunities and means to diversify adequately its economy, thus enriching the effects of the “One country, two systems” principle, he added.

The Government hoped that its role as an advisor to the Forum could create further synergy regarding the city’s own development strategies and its stated roles. These included being a commercial and trade cooperation service platform between China and Portuguese-speaking countries.

Mr Chui noted Macao already had a bridging role in linking overseas infrastructure contractors and international financial institutions to participate in the country’s development proposals, such as the “Belt and Road” initiative and the development of a city cluster in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.

The two-day Forum – which also counts among its advisors the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China and the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Macao – has launched a “Belt and Road Infrastructure Development Index (2017)” and a “Report on the Belt and Road Infrastructure Development Index (2017)”. The Forum will also hold – this year and for the first time – a panel discussion session for international contractors.

Mr Chui pointed out that Macao could make further and complementary efforts toward the country’s development – while assisting in advancing the pace of development worldwide – due to the advantages provided by the “One country, two systems” principle; the city’s ties with Portuguese-speaking countries; and Macao’s good links to networks of overseas Chinese, some of them based in the city.

During this morning’s opening ceremony, the Chief Executive also unveiled a commemorative plaque for the headquarters of the China and Portuguese-speaking Countries Co-operation and Development Fund.

Macao’s involvement in the country’s implementation of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road (collectively known as the “Belt and Road” initiative) is part of the city’s strategic development programme, as laid out in the city’s first Five-Year Development Plan. A Government committee has been formed in order better to coordinate Macao’s involvement in the initiative.

Premier of the State Council Li Keqiang announced, while in Macao in October last year, the Central Government’s strong support for Macao to make use of its inherent advantages in order to support the work of the “Belt and Road” initiative; and support for the city as host annually of the International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum.

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