News Details
Yang Zhenwu: Join the “One Belt, One Road” Chorus

Photo: Yang Zhenwu, Director-general of the People's Daily

The 2016 Media Cooperation Forum on Belt and Road hosted by the People's Daily has opened today in the Chinese capital. In a speech addressed to the forum, Yang Zhenwu, Director-general of the People's Daily says the Media Cooperation Forum on Belt and Road has become the biggest Chinese-media-hosted international media summit in terms of the number of participating countries and media outlets. This year's forum is expected to bring forth six major cooperation agreements.

Yang says President Xi's vision of the “One Belt, One Road” is based on his realistic assessment of our time, and his far-sighted view of the world's development prospects of tomorrow. This vision is thinking about world development in “the Chinese way,” and it is what the China model can contribute to global governance and world peace.

The “One Belt, One Road” is first and foremost a route of cooperation. The materialization of harmony is based on collaboration and the attainment of mutual benefit is based on mutual consultation. The route seeks to bring new opportunities to the participating countries and regions, build new platforms for international trade and investment, and open new channels for international cultural exchange. So far, the initiative has drawn in over 70 countries and international organizations. Over 30 countries have struck deals with China in the joint construction of the “One Belt, One Road”.

The “One Belt, One Road” is a route of common prosperity. As the world's second largest economy, the out-going propensity of the Belt and Road vision is set to “spill” China's economic vigor and prowess over to the other participating countries. Working under the spirit of maintaining and strengthening good neighborly relationships, China has initiated the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank, the Silk Road Fund, and the China-Europe Economic Cooperation Fund. Currently, 20 countries have reached agreements with China for joint production cooperation. 17 countries along the route's passing have entered into 46 foreign-based joint ventures, creating some 60,000 new jobs for the local population. Last year, the bilateral trade between China and the other Belt and Road countries taken as whole hit 1 trillion US dollars. Chinese companies have together injected some 15 billion US dollars as direct investment into 49 Belt and Road countries over the same year.

The “One Belt, One Road” is a road of solidarity. The four objectives of policy coordination, infrastructure connectivity, trade freedom and capital flow all have to be based on shared vision and understanding among the peoples. Over the past three years, countries along the route's passing have seen an increase in political mutual trust, culture exchanges, people-to-people exchanges and people-to-people friendship.

Yang says the People's Daily has been on the forefront of getting the message of “One Belt, One Road” across. Up till now, the paper has signed “bilateral cooperation memorandum of understanding” with 33 mainstream media firms of 23 countries. These MOUs enable different media to exchange their news stories and maximize the value of good stories. They also help increase cross-border jointly conducted interviews. Following the 2014 “Longjiang Trip --- Chinese and Russian Media Joint Interviews”, Chinese and Russian media this year have organized the joint interview trip in Sino-Russian border cities. The People's Daily is also keen in keeping pace with the new technologies of the media industry. The paper's 29 print publications and 374 online media outlets including website, app, Weibo, Wechat and other overseas social media presences all have extensive technological exchanges with foreign partners. Partners study emerging technologies together and discuss together new trends in the media industry and how to best capitalize on them.

Yang Zhenwu says this year's forum is expected to bring forth six major cooperation agreements. The first agreement is to put online a multi-lingual “One Belt, One Road” global media coordination website. The second agreement is to establish a “League of New Media among Belt and Road Countries”. The third is to create a multi-lingual “cloud” platform where news reports can be freely translated into a destination language and stories can be go where they are meant to. The fourth is to inaugurate a secretariat for this forum. The secretariat will be tasked with implementing all the bilateral and multi-lateral cooperation deals. The fifth is to organize several multi-national groups of journalists to conduct joint cross-border reporting trips. These trips will take place simultaneously and cover Asia, Europe and Africa at the same time. They will also strive to cover as many aspects of the Belt and Road routes as possible. The sixth is to publish the book One Belt, One Road,and launch the book globally in the six languages of Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish and Arabic.

Yang also made three pleas to the participants at the forum. The first plea is for journalists to win hearts and minds for the “One Belt, One Road”. Yang says the initiative has completed the planning phase. Entering the “field work” phase, the importance of policy coordination and information sharing between countries and regions become ever more pronounced. Media not only have the power to report on these indispensibles, but also the power to showcase the achievements so the arduous work can be boosted by the momentum of optimism and confidence. Media outlets should work together to win more hearts and minds for the Belt and Road and help people find ways to benefit from taking part.

The second plea is for media to be the facilitator of market integration. “One Belt, One Road” is a joint endeavor of many nations. To integrate these nations into a cohesive market, mutual political trust, geographical connectivity and the complementary nature of different economies all need to be publicized for the markets to gravitate towards integration instead of fragmentation. Media can collaborate in disseminating market information and the publicity of good resources and investment and trade opportunities.

The third plea is for journalists to become the “good will” ambassadors for the “One Belt, One Road”. The good friendship among the Belt and Road nations is the ultimate measure of success for this great undertaking. The “One Belt, One Road” initiative has cultural difference and ethnic difference to overcome from the very outset. Yet, there are always common pursuits and common wishes that lie hidden behind these differences. Journalists should seek to find what different peoples share in common and increase the publicity of these common wishes so that mutual trust builds up, isolation breaks down, and hearts and minds come together.

Yang concludes by alluding to the Zhang Qian, the Western Han Chinese envoy whose mission to Central Asia became known as the “official” inauguration of the ancient Silk Road. Reflecting on Zhang Qian's brave undertaking 2,000 years ago, Yang encourages journalists to actively engage in the construction of the new Silk Road, a Green Silk Road, a Healthy Silk Road, a Smart Silk Road and a Peaceful Silk Road.

The full text of Yang Zhenwu's speech addressed to the forum is as follows:

Honorable vice chairman of the People's Congress,

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen, good morning!

Today, 212 media organizations from 101 countries have gathered here for the Media Cooperation Forum on Belt and Road. On behalf of the People's Daily, which hosts this forum, let me extend a warm welcome to the participants.

President Xi's vision of the “One Belt, One Road” is based on his realistic assessment of our time, and his far-sighted view of the world's development prospects of tomorrow. Against the backdrop of a painfully slow recovery of the world economy, President Xi's “One Belt, One Road” initiative is described as the biggest economic recovery and rejuvenation plan the world has ever seen. The initiative seeks to mobilize multiple resource factors and integrate a fragmented market. Only in an integrated market can different countries complement each other in resources, open up opportunities for cooperation and expand development space.

This vision is thinking about world development in “the Chinese way,” and it is what the China model can contribute to global governance and world peace.

Since the initiative's inception three years ago, the “One Belt, One Road” has established itself first and foremost a route of cooperation. The materialization of harmony is based on collaboration and the attainment of mutual benefit is based on mutual consultation. The route seeks to bring new opportunities to the participating countries and regions, build new platforms for international trade and investment, and open new channels for international cultural exchange. So far, the initiative has drawn in over 70 countries and international organizations. Over 30 countries have struck deals with China in the joint construction of the “One Belt, One Road”.

The “One Belt, One Road” is also a route of common prosperity. As the world's second largest economy, the out-going propensity of the Belt and Road vision is set to “spill” China's economic vigor and prowess over to the other participating countries. Working under the spirit of maintaining and strengthening good neighborly relationships, China has initiated the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank, the Silk Road Fund, and the China-Europe Economic Cooperation Fund. Currently, 20 countries have reached agreements with China for joint production cooperation. 17 countries along the route's passing have entered into 46 foreign-based joint ventures, creating some 60,000 new jobs for the local population. Last year, the bilateral trade between China and the other Belt and Road countries taken as whole hit 1 trillion US dollars. Chinese companies together have injected some 15 billion US dollars as direct investment into 49 Belt and Road countries over the same year.

The “One Belt, One Road” is a road of solidarity. The four objectives of policy coordination, infrastructure connectivity, trade freedom and capital flow all have to be based on shared vision and understanding among the peoples. It is ultimately a way of merging the Chinese Dream with the dreams of other nations. Over the past three years, countries along the route's passing have seen an increase in political mutual trust, culture exchanges, people-to-people exchanges and people-to-people friendship.

Journalists are both the witness and the recorder of history-in-the-making. The attention the “One Belt, One Road” is getting, it rightly deserves. The initiative is indeed carrying history into the future. It breaks down isolation for opening up. It replaces confrontation with communication, and it shares prosperity through inclusive participation in a joint project.

This year's Media Cooperation Forum on Belt and Road is already the third annual gathering in a row. Since the forum's inauguration in 2014, the forum has grown into the largest China-hosted media summit with the most participating foreign countries and media organizations. The People's Daily, as the forum's host, has been on the forefront of getting the message of “One Belt, One Road” across. Up till now, the paper has signed “bilateral cooperation memorandum of understanding” with 33 mainstream media firms of 23 countries. These MOUs enable different media to exchange their news stories and maximize the value of good stories. They also help increase cross-border jointly conducted interviews. Following the 2014 “Longjiang Trip --- Chinese and Russian Media Joint Interviews”, Chinese and Russian media this year have organized the joint interview trip in Sino-Russian border cities. The People's Daily is also keen in keeping pace with the new technologies of the media industry. The paper's 29 print publications and 374 online media outlets including website, app, Weibo, Wechat and other overseas social media presences all have extensive technological exchanges with foreign partners. Partners study emerging technologies together and discuss together new trends in the media industry and how to best capitalize on them.

This year's forum is expected to bring forth six major cooperation agreements. The first agreement is to put online a multi-lingual “One Belt, One Road” global media coordination website. The second agreement is to establish a “League of New Media among Belt and Road Countries”. The third is to create a multi-lingual “cloud” platform where news reports can be freely translated into a destination language and stories can be go where they are meant to. The fourth is to inaugurate a secretariat for this forum. The secretariat will be tasked with implementing all the bilateral and multi-lateral cooperation deals. The fifth is to organize several multi-national groups of journalists to conduct joint cross-border reporting trips. These trips will take place simultaneously and cover Asia, Europe and Africa at the same time. They will also strive to cover as many aspects of the Belt and Road routes as possible. The sixth is to publish the book“One Belt, One Road,”and launch the book globally in the six languages of Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish and Arabic.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The best wisdom is thinking ahead of time. On behalf of the People's Daily, I want to make three pleas to the participants so that together we know what are expected of us.

The first plea is for journalists to win hearts and minds for the “One Belt, One Road”. So far the initiative has already completed its planning phase. Entering the “field work” phase, the importance of policy coordination and information sharing between countries and regions become ever more pronounced. Media not only have the power to report on these indispensibles, but also the power to showcase the achievements so the arduous work ahead can be boosted by the momentum of optimism and confidence. Media outlets should work together to win more hearts and minds for the Belt and Road and help people find ways to benefit from taking part.

The second plea is for media to be the facilitator of market integration. “One Belt, One Road” is a joint endeavor of many nations. To integrate these nations into a cohesive market, mutual political trust, geographical connectivity and the complementary nature of different economies all need to be publicized for the markets to gravitate towards integration instead of fragmentation. Media can collaborate in disseminating market information and the publicity of good resources and investment and trade opportunities.

The third plea is for journalists to become the “good will” ambassadors for the “One Belt, One Road”. The good friendship among the Belt and Road nations is the ultimate measure of success for this great undertaking. The “One Belt, One Road” initiative has cultural difference and ethnic difference to overcome from the very outset. Yet, there are always common pursuits and common wishes that lie hidden behind these differences. Journalists should seek to find what different peoples share in common and increase the publicity of these common wishes so that mutual trust builds up, isolation breaks down, and hearts and minds come together.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

2,000 years ago, the West Han Chinese envoy Zhang Qian set out on an audacious mission of connecting the Han Empire with Central Asia. He succeeded in his mission and his undertaking became known as the “official” inauguration of the ancient Silk Road, a vital trade route linking Asia to Europe. Reflecting on Zhang Qian's brave undertaking and his spiritual legacy, what we are offered today but an opportunity to creating new history, a new history of joint efforts and a new history of the Silk Road with its four new core values of Green Silk Road, Healthy Silk Road, Smart Silk Road and Peaceful Silk Road.

Let me conclude my remarks by wishing this year's forum a complete success. Thank you all!