China actively supports social, economic development of Moldova - Chinese envoy says
11:02 | 30.09.2022 Category: Interview, Event
Interview given to the MOLDPRES State News Agency and Radio Moldova station by Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the People's Republic of China to the Republic of Moldova Yan Wenbin on National Day of the People's Republic of China
MOLDPRES: Dear Mr. Ambassador, there is a Moldovan saying - A friend is like wine, the older it is, the better it is. This year we marked 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Moldova. How do you assess the dynamics of cooperation between our countries? What were the most relevant events and achievements during this period?
Yan Wenbin: Since the establishment of diplomatic relations 30 years ago, Chinese-Moldovan relations have developed in a healthy and stable way. The friendship between the two peoples is like Moldovan wine, 30 years old, with an incomparable aroma.
The most important thing is that Moldova and China have always adhered to principles such as mutual respect, equality and mutual benefits, non-interference in the internal affairs of the other state, supporting each other in matters related to national sovereignty and territorial integrity. This is a solid political foundation for the development of bilateral relations. I want to emphasize the fact that the Chinese state has never sought any geopolitical or other interest in Moldova, but only wants to develop friendship and cooperation.
At the beginning of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Moldova, the value of trade was only 70,000 US dollars, and in 2021 it increased to 849 million US dollars, China becoming the sixth trading partner of Moldova. In the first half of this year, the value of bilateral trade between China and Moldova reached 414 million US dollars, up by 5.78% compared to the same period last year. As a good friend and partner, China has been actively supporting the social and economic development of Moldova for a long time, the photovoltaic plant in Criuleni being an outstanding example.
China and Moldova support each other at all times. I would like to give two examples. The first example is the spiritual and material help that the Moldovan people offered to China in various ways, after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Chinese side also immediately helped the Moldovan side, supporting it with numerous batches of pandemic prevention aid and vaccines. Another example: following the start of the Ukrainian crisis, the Chinese Embassy evacuated over 3,000 Chinese citizens from Ukraine via Moldova, in just one week. To help Moldova deal with the refugee crisis, China has also offered humanitarian aid worth five million yuan.
MOLDPRES: Your Excellency, on 1 October 2022, it will be 73 years since the founding of the People's Republic of China. During this historical period, China has seen great changes and immense development achievements. What achievements are the Chinese people meeting this particularly important event this year?
Yan Wenbin: As we all know, the past two years have been unusual and very complicated for each country. In front of various challenges and difficulties, the Chinese Communist Party and the Chinese government unite and lead the Chinese people in continuing the remarkable and effective efforts of Chinese-style modernization and the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.
China continues to adhere to a set of effective pandemic prevention and control measures, including science-based prevention, precise policy implementation and the "zero-Covid dynamic" policy, to keep the infection rate and death rate at the lowest level from the world. China, the world's second largest economy, has also overcome various difficulties and maintained its overall economic stability and growth trend. In the first half of this year, GDP increased by 2.5% compared to the same period of the previous year. China has taken firm measures to promote the common prosperity of the entire population and self-reliance in high-tech development. The successful hosting of the Beijing Winter Olympics represents the fulfillment of China's solemn commitment to the international community. On October 16, the 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party will open. This congress will work out a great plan to create a better life for the Chinese people.
It should be emphasized that the Chinese state has also demonstrated firm determination and solid capabilities in defending national sovereignty, territorial integrity and national dignity. A fact highlighted in the Taiwan issue. Like Moldova, China faces the historic task of achieving national reunification. China must and will unify. Any attempt to prevent China's reunification, no matter where it comes from, will fail.
MOLDPRES: Mr. Ambassador, during the 10 months of your mandate in the Republic of Moldova, you had several meetings, both with officials, representatives of Ministries and State Agencies, as well as with those from the business and academic environment. What are your impressions and the results of these meetings?
Yan Wenbin: The extensive contacts with people from all social categories in Moldova left a deep impression on me. I really felt the feelings of friendship of the Moldovan side towards China and the strong desire to develop cooperation between our countries, which gives me courage.
In the process of communication and dialogue, we presented, together with our friends from Moldova, some concrete ideas for the development of cooperation between our countries. Some of these have already been implemented. For example, over ten universities and scientific research institutions from China and Moldova took part in the first Romanian language teaching seminar, in videoconference format; grape and wine research institutions from China and Moldova have established contacts to discuss specific issues of cooperation; Pingdingshan city in Henan province and Ungheni municipality twinned, and Wuhan city and Soroca municipality organized a friendly meeting in video conference format.
MOLDPRES: China is considered a big investor globally. What areas could Chinese investments cover in the Republic of Moldova?
Yan Wenbin: China has become one of the largest foreign investors in the world for some time. In 2021, China's industry-wide direct investment abroad was about 145.19 billion US dollars, with an annual growth of 2.2%.
Unfortunately, until now, China's investments in Moldova are far from satisfactory. This is a weak point in the relationship between China and Moldova, which must be fixed as soon as possible. On the other hand, this means that there is great potential for investment and cooperation between the two sides. The government of Moldova is making efforts to attract foreign investment through which to develop agricultural cultivation and advanced processing, digitalization, transport infrastructure, new energies and other areas. China is a great power in these areas, and the two countries can advance discussions and seek opportunities for collaboration. The Chinese Embassy will actively provide assistance in this regard.
Investment cooperation is closely related to a good business environment. We hope and believe that Moldova will offer Chinese investors an open, fair, non-discriminatory and predictable environment.
MOLDPRES: Can the Republic of Moldova fructify the possibilities of economic cooperation with China, the country with the greatest economic potential, but also the largest market in the world? What do you think?
Yan Wenbin: China's GDP per capita has exceeded 12,000 US dollars, and the middle-income population has exceeded 400 million people. No one wants to miss such a big market.
As the dominant export product of Moldova, wine is increasingly appreciated by Chinese consumers. Recently, I visited several Moldovan wine producers and they all wanted to expand their exports to China. Not long ago, at the initiative and with the support of the Chinese Embassy, several Moldovan wine companies participated in promotion and live sales activities on the Douyin (Tiktok) platform in China, with quite good results. Moldovan wines must continue to be promoted on the Chinese market. At the same time, the two countries can also consider collaboration at the level of the entire production chain, from vine cultivation to wine production.
China's demand for high-quality agricultural products is growing day by day, and here Moldova has its advantages. Edible vegetable oil and shelled nuts from Moldova have obtained approval to enter the Chinese market. I met twice with the Moldovan Minister of Agriculture to discuss in detail how we can further expand the export of agricultural products to China. During this period, the Chinese Embassy actively worked with the relevant government departments and enterprises from China and Moldova, making efforts for more agricultural products from Moldova to enter the Chinese market.
MOLDPRES: Currently, the Government of Moldova is accelerating the process of using green energy, and China has remarkable advantages in this regard. What will be the prospects for cooperation in this field between our countries?
Yan Wenbin: Cooperation in the field of new energies between China and Moldova has achieved preliminary results, recalling here the photovoltaic plant in Criuleni, built with the help of the Chinese government, which is currently the largest of its kind in the whole of Moldova. I noticed that, not long ago, Mrs. Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilița, on a trip to the Criuleni district, paid a special visit to this plant.
The diversification of energy sources and the development and use of green energy are the current priorities of the Government of the Republic of Moldova. China is a world leader in new energy development and has outstanding advantages in new energy technologies, quality, production capacity and cost. There is no doubt that in the field of new energies, the cooperation between China and Moldova has broad prospects, and the methods of cooperation can be flexible and diverse, such as trade, investment, joint production, technology transfer, etc., which requires a connection permanent and discussions between companies in our countries.
MOLDPRES: We are all going through a period marked by dramatic events, energy crises etc. How do you see the future of mankind through the lens of Chinese wisdom, potential and solutions?
Yan Wenbin: In a way, it can be said that the world is currently at a new crossroads between war and peace. International peace, security and development are facing severe, unprecedented challenges and difficulties.
In times of challenges and crises, no country can stand aside, only solidarity and cooperation is the right way in the world. To this end, following the concept of a community with a common future for mankind, Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed the initiative of global development and global security that China is effectively and sincerely putting into practice, actively promoting within international community peace, development, cooperation and common benefits.
In fact, if all the countries of the world, especially the great powers, were to implement the principle of "what you don't like, don't do to others", as China does, they would effectively abandon any form of hegemony, unilateralism, double standards , "exceptionalism", "zero sum game" and would practice genuine multilateralism and win cooperation, then we could expect peace, security and sustainable development within the international community.
MOLDPRES: Mr. Ambassador Yan Wenbin, thank you for being kind enough to give this interview to our Agency.
Photo: Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Chisinau