17-19 May 2019 | FUZHOU – To promote development and cooperation in cities along the Maritime Silk Road, UCLG ASPAC’s 21st Century Maritime Cooperation Committee organised the Maritime Economy and Urban Development – Coastal and Port Cooperation Forum last 17-19 May 2019 at the Fuzhou Strait International Conference and Exhibition Center. The Forum welcomed a total of 147 delegates from 19 countries.

In his opening speech, UCLG ASPAC Co-President Mr. Song Jingwu, Vice President of the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC), recognised the role of the cCommittee in establishing a sustainable maritime cooperation platform. At present, the Committee has 53 members and is making steady progress. He further expressed that China wishes to work with other countries to deepen practical cooperation and protection of the marine environment. UCLG ASPAC Co-President and Dhulikel Municipality Mayor Mr. Ashok Kumar Byanju Shrestha also delivered his opening speech. He noted that Nepal is at an important stage of development with a new constitution on local governments in place. He stated that “Nepal is outward looking and we always look for new ideas and inspiration from successful cities. We are happy of this opportunity to join this Forum where we can discuss and strengthen our cooperation at the local level.”

During his keynote speech, Fuzhou Municipal People’s Government Mayor Mr. You Mengjun focused on the strategies the city is implementing to construct a “Maritime Fuzhou.” Surabaya Vice Mayor Whisnu Sakti Buana highlighted their experience as a port city and discussed how to strengthen port connectivity.

In her closing speech, UCLG ASPAC Secretary General Bernadia Irawati Tjandradewi stressed the essential role of cities in ensuring sustainable development. She emphasised that the protection of the environment and a sustainable marine economy can go hand in hand and challenged the local leaders into making this a reality.

Delegates participated in a study visit which featured the Jiangyin Port, a crucial hub port in Fujian Province that connects countries along the Belt and Road. They also had the option to visit either the Guling Tourist Resort, a national eco-tourism zone, or Three Lanes and Seven Alleys, an important historical and cultural landmark in Fuzhou.

The Maritime Economy and Urban Development – Coastal and Port Cooperation Forum was part of the Second 21st Century Maritime Silk Road Expo and the 21st Cross-Straits Fair for Economy and Trade.

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