The 7th ASEAN–China Agricultural Cooperation Forum was held in Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, on Sept. 16. Tang Renjian, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of China, attended the opening ceremony and delivered a speech.
Minister Tang spoke highly of China–ASEAN agricultural relations, saying that since President Xi Jinping proposed building a closer China–ASEAN community with a shared future in 2013, China and ASEAN countries have been deeply engaged in agricultural cooperation, which has become a new growth area for China-ASEAN economic and trade cooperation. This year, which coincides with the “ASEAN–China Year of Agricultural Development and Food Security Cooperation,” the two sides have deepened their S&T cooperation, successfully implemented a number of agricultural technology demonstration projects, strengthened personnel exchanges and enhanced the level of friendship and mutual trust, and witnessed a rapid growth in agro-product trade.
In order to further deepen the mutually beneficial agricultural cooperation between China and ASEAN countries and promote safer, greener, smarter and more stable agricultural development in the region, Minister Tang made the following four proposals: 1) strengthen planning coordination by jointly promoting the protection and utilization of agricultural resources and improving the quality, efficiency and competitiveness of agro-products, among other important tasks; 2) promote the application of information technology by implementing smart farm pilot projects in ASEAN countries; 3) propel the growth of the agricultural economy and trade by building a number of high-level economic and trade investment and cooperation parks related to the sector; 4) facilitate people-to-people exchange, strengthen the exchange of agricultural talent at all levels and in all fields, and implement a range of “small but impactful” poverty reduction projects.
The forum was co-organized by Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs (MARA) and the People's Government of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Ma Youxiang, Vice Minister of MARA, presided over the opening ceremony. Lan Tianli, Chairman of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, delivered a speech. Xu Xianhui, Vice Chairman of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, and Wei Baigang, Chief Economist and Director-General of the General Office of MARA, attended the forum. Altogether, more than 180 people participated, including ministers of agriculture and diplomatic envoys of some ASEAN countries, representatives of international organizations, officials from Chinese agricultural departments, experts and scholars, and company representatives.