State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi shakes hands with China’s President Mr. Xi Jinping, left photo, and with Russia’s President Mr. Vladimir Putin, right photo. Photo: MNA
State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi paid a working visit to China from 24th to 29th April 2019 to attend the 2nd Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation at the invitation of President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China.
The 2nd Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation was held from 25 to 27 April 2019 in Beijing, China and attended by over 5000 high-level delegates from over 150 countries including 37 Heads of State and Government and representatives from international organizations.
On 26th April, State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi attended the opening ceremony of the 2nd Belt and Road Forum held in the morning at the China National Convention Centre-CNCC in Beijing and delivered a speech at the High-Level Meeting Session 1 under the theme: “Belt and Road Cooperation: Shaping a Brighter Shared Future”.
In her speech, the State Counsellor stated that Myanmar welcomed the Belt and Road Initiative launched by China since the 1st Belt and Road Forum, and expressed her hope that the Second Forum would provide the opportunity to deliberate on how to strengthen the existing partnership in the next phase and to achieve high-quality cooperation under the win-win partnership of the Belt and Road Initiative. She stressed that projects under this Initiative need to be in line with the development plans and priorities of the participating countries, should not only be economically feasible but also socially and environmentally responsible, and most importantly, the projects must win the confidence and support of local people. She added that Myanmar serves as a land bridge between South Asia and Southeast Asia, in close proximity to large economies such as China, India and ASEAN. It has always been Myanmar’s policy to maintain close and friendly relations with all nations, especially with her neighbours. She recalled that at the first BRI Forum, Myanmar signed with China the MoU on cooperation within the framework of BRI, indicating its commitment to work together to realize the goal of common development in the areas of mutual interests, in line with Myanmar’s national plans and priorities. She then informed the meeting that two years on, Myanmar and China completed the signing of the MoU on jointly building the Myanmar-China Economic Corridor and also agreed to set up Border Economic Cooperation Zones to facilitate trade and investment. She expressed her belief that the BRI projects selected in line with Myanmar’s national plan and priorities will contribute to its endeavours for the improvement of much needed infrastructure that will not merely enhance domestic connectivity but also improve cross-border connectivity.
In the evening, the State Counsellor attended the welcome dinner hosted by President Xi Jinping to the Heads of State and Government attending the Forum at the Great Hall of the People.
In the morning of 27th April 2019, the State Counsellor attended the Leaders’ Roundtable Session 1 held at Yanqi Lake International Conference Centre in Beijing and delivered a statement under the theme of “Boosting Connectivity to explore New Sources of Growth”.
She also attended the Working Lunch and Roundtable Session 2 under the theme of “Strengthening Policy Synergy and Building Closer Partnership” and Roundtable Session 3 under the theme of “Promoting Green and Sustainable Development to implement the UN 2030 Agenda”.
At the end of the Leaders’ Roundtable, the leaders adopted a Joint Communiqué on the Belt and Road Initiative which stated, among others, that the Belt and Road Initiative aims for strengthening physical and infrastructure connectivity among countries along the Silk Road, for fostering policy coordination and connectivity cooperation, for unimpeded trade and investment, for cooperation to get clean and green environment to achieve sustainable development and for promoting people-to-people bond through exchange of culture, tourism, education, and digital connectivity.
During the visit, the State Counsellor held separate bilateral talks with President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang of the People’s Republic of China on 24th and 25th April 2019 respectively. At the meetings, the leaders stressed the importance of advancing “Comprehensive Strategic Cooperative Partnership Relations” based on the Five Principles of Peaceful Co-existence and existing “Pauk-Phaw” friendship, promoting bilateral cooperation between Myanmar and China under the framework of Belt and Road Initiative, strengthening mutually beneficial cooperation for enhancement of socio-economic lives of the two peoples, continued provision of assistance to Myanmar’s efforts for peace and national reconciliation, maintaining peace, stability and rule of law along the border areas, as well as for the success of repatriation process regarding the Rakhine issue, and lending continued support to Myanmar at the United Nations and other international fora. They also discussed on promoting cooperation in various sectors in 2020 in celebration of the 70th Anniversary of Myanmar-China diplomatic relations, further granting of rice quota for import of (100,000) metric tons from Myanmar and importation of more agro-based and animal-husbandry products from Myanmar and providing technical assistance for improvement of quality of the products, eradicating illegal border trade, and cooperation to combat human-trafficking, and providing 1 billion Yuan grant for economic and technical assistance to the government of Myanmar.
Following the bilateral meeting, State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and Premier Li Keqiang witnessed the signing ceremony of cooperation agreement and MoUs between the government of Myanmar and the government of the People’s Republic of China. The two sides signed and exchanged a total of 3 instruments namely Agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation, Memorandum of Understanding on China-Myanmar Economic Corridor (CMEC) Cooperation Plan (2019-2030), and Memorandum of Understanding on the Formulation of the Five-year Development Program for Economic and Trade Cooperation which aims to enhance cooperation in investment and productivity. According to the first Agreement, China will provide 1 billion Yuan grant to Myanmar for its endeavours for socio-economic development, the MoU on CMEC will promote cooperation in such areas as industry, transportation, energy, agriculture, digital silk road, finance, tourism, environmental protection, people-to-people exchanges, science and technology and personnel training, water resources and flood prevention and control in line with the Myanmar Sustainable Development plan.
Later in the evening, the State Counsellor attended the dinner hosted by Mr. Song Tao, Minister for International Relations Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China at the CPC International Department.
On 28th April 2019, the State Counsellor and delegation visited the Myanmar Embassy in Beijing and met with Ambassador U Thit Lin Ohn and staffs of Myanmar Embassy, military attaché office and family members.
Afterwards, the State Counsellor proceeded to the Diaoyutai State Guest House to have a meeting with Mr. Wang Yang, Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and attended the Luncheon hosted by the latter.
In the evening, the State Counsellor attended the opening ceremony of the Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition 2019 held at Guirui Theatre in Yanqin. Prior to the opening ceremony, the State Counsellor visited Exhibition Booths of Myanmar and China and attended the commemorative tree planting ceremony. Afterwards, the State Counsellor attended the opening ceremony of the Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition 2019 at Guirui Theatre together with President Xi Jinping, First Lady and other Heads of State and Government.
While in Beijing, the State Counsellor held bilateral meeting with H.E. Mr. Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation and discussed matters pertaining to the promotion of bilateral relations and cooperation, trade and investment, renovation of Taunggyi Peoples’ Hospital, continued cooperation at the United Nations and other international fora.
The State Counsellor also met with H.E. Mr. Sebastian KURZ, Chancellor of Austria on the sidelines of the Meeting, and discussed matters on promoting trade and investment, and possible investment in such areas as e-Government and infrastructure development.
During the State Counsellor’s meeting with H.E. Mr. Jean Yves Le Drian, Minister for European Union and Foreign Affairs of French Republic on 26th April 2019, they cordially discussed matters pertaining to the promotion of bilateral relations and cooperation, trade and investment and continued support to the Myanmar government’s efforts in overcoming the challenges in its democratic transition.
During the 2nd Belt and Road Forum, the State Counsellor had opportunities to discuss with the leaders of China on matters relating to promotion of bilateral cooperation between the two countries under the framework of Belt and Road Initiative, further deepening of bilateral relations and cooperation, trade and investment, provision of 1 billion Yuan grant from Chinese government to support Myanmar’s development endeavours, particularly in the peoples’ livelihood improvement, feasibility study for major projects and humanitarian assistance for the IDPs in northern part of Myanmar, as well as granting of rice quota for import of (100,000) metric tons from Myanmar and importation of more agro-based and animal-husbandry products from Myanmar.
In the morning of 29 April 2019, the State Counsellor and Myanmar delegation left Beijing by special flight to Kunming. The State Counsellor received Mr. Chen Hao, Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party of Yunnan Province at the Meeting Hall of the Kunming airport. In the afternoon, the State Counsellor and Myanmar delegation left Kunming to Phnom Penh by special flight to pay an official visit to the Kingdom of Cambodia.
During the visit to China, the State Counsellor was accompanied by Union Ministers U Thant Sin Maung, U Win Khaing, U Kyaw Tin, Deputy Ministers U Aung Htoo, U Set Aung and senior officials.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
Dated: 29 April 2019.