Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Overseas views on NPC & CPPCC: Tajikistan Chinese businessman advises on China's neighboring diplomacy

Han Dongqi (pictured above), vice president of China Association for international cultural exchanges with overseas Chinese, president of the Overseas Chinese Association in Tajikistan,

Editor's note: The National People's Congress (NPC) and the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) convene its annual sessions, known as the "two sessions" on March 3-15 2016 in Beijing. 2016 is the first year of the 13th Five-Year Plan period, and the first year of the decisive stage in completing the building of a moderately prosperous society.
In 2016, the annual growth rate target of China's gross domestic product (GDP), economic reforms, "Belt and Road" construction, financial market development and other pivotal issues of China have caught the world's attention. CNTV's Panview Column has invited foreign experts and overseas Chinese to express their views on major issues discussed at the ongoing two sessions.
By Han Dongqi, vice president of China Association for international cultural exchanges with overseas Chinese, president of the Overseas Chinese Association in Tajikistan.
On March 8, at the press conference on China's foreign policy and foreign relations, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi mentioned the fruits the "Belt and Road" initiative.
More than 70 countries and international organizations have expressed a willingness to cooperate, while more than 30 countries have already signed cooperation agreements.
The AIIB (Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank), proposed by China, has started operations in Beijing. The first investment from the Silk Road Fund has begun to bear fruit.
China's Belt and Road construction has entered a thriving stage, while AIIB operations are in full swing. The Chinese economy is perceived as a high-speed train.
During the ongoing two sessions, the world has paid much attention to Beijing. Accordingly, how to create a good environment for vital relations with overseas Chinese interests, its neighboring diplomacy can benefit multiple sides and should not just be confined to governments.
Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a speech on diplomacy with neighboring regions. He emphasized friendship and partnerships with our neighboring countries, featuring amity, sincerity, mutual benefits and inclusiveness
Public diplomacy and civil diplomacy can be combined for a positive impact. Self-strengthening seems to be more essential to deal with external affairs.
I have worked and lived in Tajikistan for nearly a decade and got very familiar with the country. It is recommended that states should develop their own diplomatic policies and act with well-defined objectives according to national conditions.
It's necessary to conduct more in-depth understanding of surrounding countries and to increase overseas Chinese education so they can become folk ambassadors.
The Belt and Road and neighboring diplomatic policy complement each other. The successful launching of the Belt and Road reflects China's diplomatic achievements. A good national image supports soft power. Each state has its unique conditions.
To understand their real needs and to provide practical support for the Belt and Road, neighboring diplomacy require our diplomatic officers and diplomatic affairs to keep pace with the times. Diplomats should upgrade their skills and expertise.
Folk diplomacy is an essential part of national diplomacy. Amity between peoples can act as the base of amity between states. Neighboring countries do not treat overseas Chinese individually. Each person represents the image of China.
Meanwhile, an individual can bring disgrace to his group. Horror stories about Chinese tourists traveling abroad have made our nation a laughing stock. Overseas Chinese laborers job skills should be improved by increasing training for them.
Consulates in surrounding countries can cooperate with local Chinese communities to develop synergies precautions in accordance with local conditions to let each Chinese citizen going abroad to study and create a good national image. Customs and other departments need to increase exports inspections too.
Our overseas marketing efforts are insufficient. Cultural exchanges are still at the negotiation stage without proper integration. Most ordinary people of neighboring countries remain unfamiliar with China.
To enhance multi-faceted cultural exchanges are important instead of being confined to one or two art performances. Exchanges need a certain extension and permeability. To promote the Belt and Road, we should learn the spirit of Xi's speech on diplomacy with neighboring regions.
Overseas Chinese need to provide effective information for diplomatic policy-makers. The combination can provide a theoretical basis for better diplomatic policy. Diplomats should do better research of neighboring countries.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs could establish more targeted national think tanks. The neighboring diplomacy, AIIB, the Belt and Road and what we are doing can be the right approach to provide good surroundings for China's development and also to benefit neighboring countries  in an effort to achieve common development.

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