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Speech by ZHOU Wenzhong, BFA Secretary General at the Welcome Dinner of the BFA Paris Conference

Time:2017-09-17 04:09:02    Views:365540    Origin:Boao Forum for Asia

Speech by ZHOU Wenzhong, BFA Secretary General at the Welcome Dinner of the BFA Paris Conference

(Paris, September 14)

Prime Minister Raffarin,

Vice Chairman Zeng,

Ambassador Zhai,

Minister Jean-BAPTISTE LEMOYNE,

Ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of the Boao Forum for Asia, I would like to avail myself of this opportunity to thank you for joining us here tonight. Thank you, Prime Minister Raffarin, Ambassador Zhai and Minister LEMOYNE, for your remarks.

It's a great pleasure for the Boao Forum to be back in Paris. 6 years ago, with the support of Prime Minister Raffarin and the French Ministry of Finance, the Forum held an international capital conference in Paris to explore innovative ways of closer financial cooperation between Asia and Europe. That conference had generated a number of inspiring ideas and principles, which contributed in various ways to the many initiatives, policies and actions later on.

The last 6 years have seen growing financial cooperation between Asia and Europe in both scope and depth. Just to give you an example, Asian and European countries have worked closely in launching the Asian Infrastructural Investment Bank as key founding members. Today, of the 80 members of AIIB, the majority are from Asia and Europe.

Cooperation between Asia and Europe has been growing, in both trade, investment and financial cooperation. I am sure that we all believe that it's now time to incorporate such cooperation into some kind of multilateral framework or mega-initiative, with the ultimate goal of free flow of goods, services, capital and people between Asia and Europe.

The Belt and Road Initiative, covering mostly Asian and European countries, offers such an opportunity. When Prime Minister Raffarin was in Beijing this May for the Belt and Road Summit, I raised this proposal to him. As always, the Prime Minister gave his support and helped us find two important French partners to co-organize the conference: the Foundation Prospective & Innovation and the French Ministry of Europe & Foreign Affairs.

Ladies and gentlemen, tomorrow will be a full day of discussions into this important initiative. I hope that such discussions, as the conference six years ago, will produce as many inspiring ideas and principles on how the cooperation between Asia and Europe can ride on this initiative and move onto a higher level.

I wish you an enjoyable evening at this beautiful palace.

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