Colombo, September 3 (newsin.asia): A Chinese-American NGO, the World Peace Communication Association (WPCA), and the New Delhi-based India Foundation, have agreed to encourage people-to-people contacts between China and India to enable fast and effective communication so that Sino-Indian issues are solved at an early stage.
Briefing the media here on Saturday, Marina Jiang, Vice President of the New York- based WPCA, said that its Secretary General, Zhang Ji Yuan, met Ram Madhav, Director of India Foundation and National General Secretary of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), on the sidelines of the Indian Ocean Conference (IOC) held in Colombo on August 31 and September 1.
“During the bilateral talks they reached an agreement on the need to increase people to people exchanges to have better understanding and to establish fast and effective communication to solve issues at any early stage,” Jiang said.
“WPCA and India Foundation will be the bridge to facilitate such exchanges,” she added.
A delegation comprising the WPCA and the State Institute of Governance, Peking University, participated in the IOC, which was addressed by the Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj, Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, among other dignitaries from more than 30 countries.
Welcoming the IOC, Jiang said that the Indian Ocean “is at the heart of the global economy. The Chinese people and government are committed to making sure that all of us, on all sides of this great ocean, are able to benefit together. Or to put it in nautical terms: we want smooth sailing for everyone!”
Jiang said that the Indian Ocean is part of the global economy and quoting Chinese President Xi Jinping, she said: “ the global economy is the big ocean you cannot escape form.”
“The Indian Ocean is the heart of the global economy,” Jiang added.
She pointed out that the international community faces a series of interlocking challenges ranging from terrorism to climate change, but no single country can face these challenges alone. Global cooperation is therefore a must, Jiang added.
The basis for cooperation already exists, because the present day world is based on inter-connectedness. It is in recognition of such interconnectedness and of the need to improve it and put it to best use, that China has devised the One Belt One Road (OBOR) connectivity project, she said.
“The OBOR will enable Southeast Asia, South Asia, Central Asia, the Middle East, Central and Eastern Europe become a hotbed of trade and prosperity,” Jiang said.
Addressing the criticism that the OBOR is a challenge to the emergence of the Indian Ocean as a distinct and coherent economic region, Jiang said that the Chinese government and people view the OBOR as being a key part of the Indian Ocean region linking the latter to the integrated global economy.
“The OBOR initiative seeks to promote mutual growth and stronger relations while also respecting the independence, sovereignty and cultural heritage of every participating nation,” she clarified.
“We are building a platform for all shareholders, governments, businesses, NGOs and students across all countries, to make progress on issues that will shape our future,” Jiang said.
No region can be defined narrowly in this highly globalized and integrated world. The definition of the Indian Ocean will necessarily have to be an inclusive one, she added.
Explaining the WPCA’ mission, Jiang said that the organization aims to bring youth from various countries together to establish links and build bridges linking the emerging generation of Chinese leaders with the emerging generation of leaders from other countries to build a better tomorrow based on mutual understanding.
(The featured image at the to shows Marina Jiang and Zhang Ji Yuan at the media conference in Colombo. Photo: Laxmi)