The grand opening of the 9th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum (IIICF) was staged at the Venetian Macao today (7 June). With the theme New Growth Drivers for Better Infrastructure and Closer Connectivity, the Forum gathered a number of political, commercial and academic figures from all over the world, especially the ones from countries along the Belt and Road, Pan-Pearl River Delta Region, Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, Portuguese-speaking countries and European countries, to discuss issues and development trends of international infrastructure, exchange information on the latest technologies and peripheral industries, and join hands to explore business opportunities.
In his welcoming speech at the opening ceremony, the Chief Executive of the Macao Special Administrative Region Fernando Chui Sai On said that the IIICF, as an important platform for all countries to exchange co-operation experiences under the Belt and Road Initiative and enrich the achievements of co-operation, has become an authoritative and influential branded event in relevant fields, thanks to the strong support from the central government and the co-operation of all parties after its establishment in 2010. Since its venue was settled in Macao seven years ago, the IIICF has been generating a synergistic effect with Macao’s role as the Commercial and Trade Co-operation Service Platform between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries, which is helpful for promoting the infrastructure co-operation among the Belt and Road countries. The 9th IIICF highlighted the effect of innovation on infrastructure, focused on the investment of social capital in infrastructure and promoted the unique role of Macao in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. The Belt and Road Infrastructure Development Index 2018 and the Annual Report on Development of the Belt and Road Construction (2018) continued to be issued to provide statistical reference for building an index system in the infrastructure field. Chief Executive Chui said that infrastructure interconnection is the basis for co-operation and is now embracing numerous development opportunities. The government of the Macao Special Administrative Region is now uniting all sectors of society to actively participate in it, striving to build and consolidated Macao’s platform so as to promote connectivity among the countries along the Belt and Road, whereby achieve the goals of plan integration, policy coordination and people-to-people bond among all Belt and Road countries.
The Vice Minister of Commerce of the State Gao Yan put forward in her speech three advices for international infrastructure co-operation: firstly, strengthening international infrastructure co-operation in an active and open manner, which is conducive to the effective allocation of resources and the creation of social values; secondly, promoting the implementation of innovation-driven development, cultivating new momentum for infrastructure development and international co-operation, exploring new modes for coordinated development of industry transformation and upgrading, and building infrastructure that will enable sustainable development; thirdly, continuing to develop infrastructure interconnection, and investing in regional economic integration and development.
The Prime Minister of Equatorial Guinea Francisco Pascual Obama Asue said that, Equatorial Guinea regards infrastructure as an important driving force for the country’s development. Its national development planning strategy – the 2020 Vision of Equatorial Guinea – aims to improve the country's economic competitiveness, reduce the cost of commercial capital and support the country's small and medium-sized enterprises. According to him, in the field of international infrastructure, the positive role that China is currently playing is exceptional, and the "Belt and Road Initiative" is a platform for infrastructure financing that promotes development and co-operation. It will lead to a large-scale interconnection and will even go further to benefit the people in remote areas.
Various activities were held during the first day of the 9th IIICF, including two thematic forums, the release ceremony of the Belt and Road Infrastructure Development Index (2018) and the Annual Report on Development of the Belt and Road Construction (2018), the “International Financial Executive Dialogue: Attracting More Social Capital to Invest in Infrastructure”, and the 4th China-LAC Infrastructure Cooperation Forum hosted by the Ministry of Commerce. The two-day event stages many different activities such as exhibition, project promotion and matching, and business meeting to enable effective exchange and collaboration among all parties. The first day of the Forum alone has attracted a huge number of participants.
Eleven parallel sessions and other activities will be held tomorrow (8 June), including the parallel session "Development of Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area", the "Seminar on Infrastructure Construction between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries" and the signing ceremony. For more information about this forum, please visit http://www.iiicf.org/.View gallery