Opening Ceremony of China-ASEAN Tourism Cooperation Year Held in Manila
The opening ceremony of the China-ASEAN tourism cooperation year took place at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) on the evening of March 16, local time. China Premier Li Keqiang and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte sent congratulation letters. Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang and Philippine Secretary of Tourism Wanda Corazon Teo read the letters and delivered an address respectively. Chairman of China National Tourism Administration (CNTA) Li Jinzao presided over the opening ceremony.
Premier Li Keqiang said in the congratulation letter that China and ASEAN countries, geographically close or not, are friendly neighbors with cultural bonds and long-lasting friendship. As a priority in ASEAN's diplomacy with surrounding countries and regions, China will support ASEAN's pivotal role in regional cooperation and is willing to share development opportunities with ASEAN countries based on mutual respect, understanding, trust and support. China is also ready to work together with ASEAN to build a closer community of shared future and promote peace, stability and prosperity in the region and the world at large.
He pointed out that tourism cooperation is an essential part of exchanges and cooperation between China and ASEAN countries and has strengthened mutual understanding and friendship between the peoples and promoted practical cooperation in other fields. As the largest source of tourists to ASEAN, China will, on the occasion of ASEAN's 50th Anniversary, take the opportunity of the China-ASEAN tourism cooperation year to breathe new life into the China-ASEAN relations in the new era.
Noting that 2016 marked the 25th anniversary of China-ASEAN dialogue, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said that the relations between the two sides are widely applauded and it is right time for advancing bilateral cooperation as they have sent to the outside a clear signal of achieving grand goals together. He congratulated on the new step in China-ASEAN tourism cooperation, and hoped that tourism cooperation would drive inclusive and sustainable growth, bring all countries involved even closer and promote regional peace, security and development.
At the opening ceremony, Vice Premier Wang Yang, along with tourism officials of ASEAN countries, unveiled the China-ASEAN tourism cooperation year.
The opening ceremony of the China-ASEAN tourism cooperation year kicked off in Manila, the Philippines, on March 16, 2017. China Premier Li Keqiang and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte sent congratulation letters. Vice Premier Wang Yang attended the ceremony and read the congratulation letter on behalf of Premier Li Keqiang. (Photo by Yang Ke/Xinhua News Agency)
After the opening ceremony, Chinese artists performed a tourism-themed song and a stage play called "Kungfu Revelations o 9 Scrolls", winning a big round of applause from the audience.
The China-ASEAN tourism cooperation year will see more than one hundred activities. CNTA Chairman Li Jinzao said at the opening ceremony that the event represents important consensus between leaders of China and ASEAN countries and will usher in a new era of China-ASEAN tourism cooperation. With more than 30 million tourists between China and ASEAN countries each year, tourism cooperation will definitely strengthen the political, economic and cultural exchanges between the two sides and provide support for the building of China-ASEAN community of shared future.
More than 1,000 people attended the opening ceremony and the following event, including delegates from CNTA, Chinese Embassy in the Philippines, Chinese Mission to ASEAN, China-ASEAN Center and the Chinese tourism industry, tourism officials of ASEAN countries, young students and citizens of Manila, as well as overseas Chinese in the Philippines.