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Ambassador Zhang Ming Addresses the International Conference on China-EU Cooperation on the SDGs

On 7 May, Ambassador Zhang Ming attended and addressed an international conference on China-EU cooperation on the SDGs held at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC). Vice President Jyrki Katainen of the European Commission attended the conference.

In his keynote speech, Ambassador Zhang said that the Chinese government takes sustainable development as a national policy and follows the philosophy of innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development. China has linked the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda with its domestic strategies, and released a national plan to implement the SDGs. China actively promotes the South-South cooperation and global exchanges. The China State International Development Cooperation Agency, inaugurated last month, provides an effective platform for China to reach out to its global partners to promote development that benefits all.

Ambassador Zhang said that China and the EU have much in common in the area of sustainable development. The two sides share the commitment to promoting peace and development, coordinating economic growth, social cohesion and environmental protection, and addressing development imbalances through international cooperation. Ambassador Zhang said that China and the EU need to enhance cooperation on the SDGs at the global level, jointly uphold the multilateral rules to keep global recovery on the right track, improve global economic governance, and reject any form of protectionism under whatever pretext.

Ambassador Zhang said that China stands ready to step up dialogue with the EU in the fields of environmental protection, clean energy, urban sustainability and circular economy, push for the attainment of climate targets set in the Paris Agreement, enhance cooperation in green finance, and jointly build the Belt and Road Initiative. China will work with the EU to integrate the 2030 Agenda into national and regional development strategies.

Vice President Katainen said that the EU and China are key partners for advancing the SDGs. The resolve of China to become a great modern socialist country by 2049, and a peaceful and environmental conscious power is also key to implementing the SDGs. The EU and China must continue to integrate the SDGs in their respective internal policies, support an open, rules-based and fair world order, refuse unilateralism, and support the development of partners in Africa or in Asia through cooperation over the Belt and Road Initiative.

The conference, co-hosted by the EESC, College of Europe, Amfori and China Chamber of International Commerce, focused on the impact of the SDGs on trade, investment, energy and climate, and China-EU cooperation in relevant fields. Nearly 200 participants, including Chinese and EU officials, entrepreneurs, scholars and journalists, were present.

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