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Sichuan Meshing with the “Point-Line-Plane” Along the Belt and Road

  On April 26th, 2013, the first China Railway Express (Chengdu) bound for Europe departed from Qingbaijiang and traveled along the “Silk Road”. As of the end of this June, the Railway has operated more than 2,000 trains, becoming an important channel for Sichuan’s opening-up to Europe.

  The China Railway Express (Chengdu) is the epitome of Sichuan's initiative to mesh with the “Belt and Road”. From August 15th to 16th, the interview team for the 5th anniversary of the “Belt and Road Initiative” arrived in Chengdu, Deyang and other places to listen to the stories of Sichuan’s opening-up from point to line, then to plane.

  Point: Build the only comprehensive cooperation and exchange platform of Europe

  In Chengdu, a “ren (human)”-shaped building of 192m stands on the central axis of its south, marking the location of the only platform in China for comprehensive cooperation and exchange with the Europe – the “Centre for China-Europe Cooperation”.

  Walking into the Center, the team felt like being inside a European office building with the ubiquitous “EU Blue”. Not only its appearance is "EU style", but also its six functional areas, namely the European Commodity Trade Exhibition and Trading Center, the Europe-China Technology Exchange Center, the Incubation Center for European Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (Mass Entrepreneurship and Innovation), the Base Center of European Enterprise Headquarters, the Agency Office for European National Economic Development Promotion, and One Stop Service Platform, are designed in accordance with the European standards.

  In the office area, names of European countries can be seen everywhere. Since its inception in last May, the Center has attracted more than 40 institutions and enterprises from Europe and countries & regions along the “Belt and Road” to settling in Sichuan, such as the China Western Center of European Union for Research and Innovation Center, , the Poland-China Economic and Cultural Exchange Foundation, the Italian International Economic and Cultural Development Association, the German Chamber of Commerce in Chengdu, the Representative Office of Lodz Province of Poland, and the Representative Office of Central Bohemian Region of Czech Republic in Sichuan.

  Ms. Li Jia, Vice General Manager of Chengdu Venture and Cloud Business Management Corporation Limited, said that Lodz is an important station of the China Railway Express (Chengdu). Under the “Belt and Road Initiative”, Poland has established closer economic and trade exchanges with Sichuan Province. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the independence of Poland. Therefore, the Poland Investment and Trade Agency will hold a series of celebrations in Sichuan to deepen exchanges and cooperation between the two sides.

  With the Centre for China-Europe Cooperation as the platform, EU-China international cooperation has opened up new opportunities. With an increasing number of European institutions and companies stationing in the city, Ge Yanxi from London saw business opportunities and brought the start-up project “LAOWAI HERE” to Chengdu. This service project aimed at providing life services and cross-cultural exchanges for foreigners has helped more than 1,000 foreigners to settle in Chengdu. The person in charge of Chengdu High-tech Zone said that the Center will forge a one-stop European-China cooperation service system integrating economy, science, technology, education, culture, art and tourism to promote all-round cooperation in capital, brand management, market expansion, transnational technology transfer transactions and project development.

  Line: Outline network extending to all sides to create a three-dimensional comprehensive opening-up platform

  After the Center, the team arrived at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport. At the country's fourth busiest airport, around one flight takes off and lands here per minute. At present, Chengdu international (regional) air lines have achieved full coverage on five continents. As of the end of June, Shuangliu International Airport opened a total of 328 routes, 109 international (regional) routes, 201 domestic routes, and 18 international routes via domestic airports. Its number and arrangement of routes rank the first in the central and western regions.

  According to the relevant person in charge of the Provincial Airport Group, since the introduction of the “Belt and Road Initiative”, the passenger handling capacity of Shuangliu International Airport has continued to grow rapidly. In 2015, it exceeded 40 million, and is expected to exceed 50 million for this year.

  On August 15th, at the T1 terminal of the Airport, an Arrangement Planning Map of Chengdu International (Regional) Strategic Route for Airline Passengers was presented before the team. On a world map, starting from Chengdu, the red and blue routes connecting Europe, Africa, Oceania, and North America are densely distributed, reaching all parts of the world. The person in charge of the Chengdu Port and Logistics Office said that it will strive to open 48 boutique business routes, 14 all-cargo routes and 30 high-quality travel routes by 2022.

  Shifting to the land transportation, the team left the Shuangliu International Airport and arrived from at Deyang where the bustling whistle at Deyang Modern Logistics Port of the China Railway Express is thriving. "This is another cargo distribution center of Chengdu International Railway Port", Mr. Xu Difei, Vice Director of the Freight Marketing Center of China Railway Chengdu Group said that the high-end equipment and other products produced in Deyang can be transported to Europe from Deyang Modern Logistics Port by the China Railway Express (Chengdu).

  Plane: Do a good job in developing a higher level open economy

  The Center for China-Europe Cooperation, Shuangliu International Airport and Chengdu International Railway Port are located in the (Sichuan) Free Trade Zone of China. Since the listing of the Sichuan Pilot Free Trade Zone on April 1st, 2017, it has actively integrated into the “Belt and Road” construction, improved its ability and level of opening-up, and developed a higher level open economy.

  The Sichuan Pilot Free Trade Zone regards institutional innovation as the core of construction. For the approval and filing of foreign-funded projects, it promotes the “once and for all” reform; implements the registration system reform of “reducing the multi-certificates into one, advocating one license and one code”. Visa processing time is shortened from 7 to 5 working days. The taxation procedure is streamlined to the utmost to reduce its processing time...

  In the Digital Trade Exhibition Hall of the DHgate at the Sichuan Pilot Free Trade Zone in Chengdu, a miniature “Silk Road” was displayed before the reporter. By virtue of this cross-border e-commerce trading platform, a “Hot Mom” born after 1985 in Chengdu started her own business. She sold women's shoes to the world, with an annual transaction volume reaching more than RMB 20 million. Mr. Zhu Rong, General Manager of the Southwest Operation Center of DHgate, said that on DHgate, women's shoes, household products, auto parts and other products of Chengdu are popular products for export.

  In the building of the Digital Trade Sharing Center at which the Digital Trade Exhibition Hall of DHgate is located, the Malaysian National Pavilion is also being decorated. As the first national pavilion of Malaysia in China, although still under decoration, the staff there is already busy working.

  In the High-Tech Pilot Free Trade Zone of Chengdu, Carnegie Mellon University has established a branch campus, which is dedicated to building an international research platform for advanced technology transfer and global think tank exchanges; Chengdu and Silicon Valley will set up high-tech industries and international development platforms for financial innovation respectively; with a ASEAN perspective, it is exploring to establish a management hub for the supply chain of the “Belt and Road”...

 

 
 
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