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World Ocean Week kicks off

By Zhao Shijun (China Daily) Updated:2016-11-07

Focusing on maritime industries, the international event looks to promote cooperation in all matters marine

Cooperation with regions along the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, especially members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, is the focus of the ongoing 2016 World Ocean Week in Xiamen, taking place from Nov 4 to 10 in the coastal city in East China's Fujian province.

The event comprises international forums on the maritime industry, maritime exhibitions and marine cultural activities.

The theme of this year's event is "Jointly Building the Maritime Silk Road: New Vision New Landscape". As ASEAN member countries are the core part of China's Belt and Road Initiative, cooperation with the region is the highlight of this year's World Ocean Week, according to the event organizers.

Wang Hong, head of the State Oceanic Administration, spoke highly of the event's role during the opening ceremony on Nov 4.

"The World Ocean Week is an important platform for ocean dialogues," Wang said.

Maritime center

At the 2016 International Ocean Forum and the sixth Ministerial Forum on Marine Sustainable Development for Developing Countries - major sections of the World Ocean Week - on Friday, an agreement for jointly building the China-ASEAN Marine Cooperation Center was signed between officials from the State Oceanic Administration and the Fujian provincial government.

Premier Li Keqiang proposed the marine cooperation center when he attended the 17th China-ASEAN Leaders Meeting in Myanmar in November 2014.

The center will be a platform for multilateral cooperation in the areas of marine industry trade and investment, maritime research, environmental protection, disasters prevention and mitigation, maritime management, personnel training and other interconnectivity affairs.

Zhang Yigong, deputy mayor of Xiamen, said the China-ASEAN Marine Cooperation Center is of strategic significance.

"The move is an essential part of the Belt and Road Initiative. The center will serve as an efficient and important link between China and ASEAN members," Zhang said.

During the forum, officials and experts from Xiamen, Fujian province, the State Oceanic Administration and ASEAN member states also discussed a broad range of issues relating to maritime development cooperation.

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