Arroyo delivers keynote speech in China-ASEAN Mayors’ Forum in China
House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo delivered the keynote speech at Saturday’s China-ASEAN Mayors’ Forum in China’s Nanning City.
The Pampanga 2nd District Representative who was the country’s president from 2001 up to 2010 said she is greatly honored to speak at the 4th China-ASEAN Mayors’ Forum “because this is such an important moment in China’s role in world affairs,” citing its Belt and Road Initiative.
“It comes at a time when China has emerged from four decades of breathtaking growth to become today the world’s second largest economy,” Arroyo said.
The 71-year-old leader said that since “China can mobilize a powerful combination of capital, technology and implementation capability,” its partnership with ASEAN “has the potential to make the 21st century Maritime Silk Road among the most important drivers of economic development in our region and in the world.”
She also proposed that since “management of border relations between a superpower like China and the much smaller countries in the ASEAN can be a sensitive matter,” “the ideal approach is for China to think of itself as the Big Uncle to many nephews in the family.”
“I have a positive attitude towards joint initiatives with China, because joint action creates opportunities for fostering friendship and cooperation,” Arroyo said.
According to a statement from Arroyo’s office, the forum gathers more than 300 mayors, experts and scholars from China and ASEAN countries to carry out multi-level investment exchanges to improve trade and other bilateral relations.
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