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Brunei-Guangxi economic corridor proposed
Publication Date : 04-09-2013
The proposal for a "Brunei-Guangxi Economic Corridor" was handed by the Minister of Industry and Primary Resources (MIPR) to the governor of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region yesterday during their meeting in Nanning.
Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Utama Setia Hj Yahya Begawan Mudim Dato Paduka Hj Bakar attended the 10th China-Asean Expo and the 10th China-Asean Business and Investment Summit at the International Conference Centre in Liyuan Hotel.
According to the minister, Brunei intends to initiate better ways of improving relationships between the Sultanate and China, in particular, the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.
The minister also mentioned that Brunei is looking to build stronger links with Guangxi through cooperation in many fields including agriculture and food production.
Copies of the proposal handed to Chinese officials were in both English and Chinese, and the minister added a detailed commercial plan would be developed later.
According to YB Pehin Hj Yahya, the whole idea behind the corridor proposal is to make Guangxi the point of entry for Brunei into China, with Guangxi being selected as a special area to start the cooperation between the two countries.
He added they had picked the port of Qinzhou City as the area to develop, noting that agriculture and fisheries are areas of development that can be looked into as well.
Ending the dialogue, the minister said he believed both sides would benefit from the proposal which would further enhance the Brunei-China relationship.
During the meeting, the Guangxi governor expressed his appreciation at the proposal to improve relations between Brunei and Guangxi, and promised due consideration would be given to it, with more concrete ideas on the suggestions given in response later.
Chen also expressed his delight in the amount of focus Brunei has put on the expansion in Guangxi by placing such importance and significance to the role of Guangxi in bilateral ties, and added Guangxi will similarly reciprocate the trust by cooperating with Brunei as much as possible.
In a statement to The Brunei Times, YB Pehin Dato Hj Yahya said MIPR is exploring opportunities to enhance economic cooperation with Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, especially in the areas of agriculture and food production through a special arrangement.
The minister hopes it would open a gateway to tap the potentially fast and high growth in China, and that his Chinese counterpart would welcome any effort to enhance the bilateral relationship.
Yesterday, YB Pehin Hj Yahya opened his dialogue by congratulating Chen on his recent promotion to governor of the autonomous region in April, and also thanked him for the invitation to Nanning.
The minister then spoke of the rice planted by both himself and the governor in Brunei in May 2010, which had now grown, and said the project was moving to a different level.
He also expressed his gratitude for the assistance and support extended by Guangxi technicians and experts towards the project, and invited Chen to visit Brunei once more to harvest the rice together.
YB Pehin Hj Yahya revealed that 200 hectares is being allocated for production, but the overall area is expandable to about 5,000 hectares.
The governor also thanked the minister for his contribution to the success of the expo, and hoped he would continue to support the event in the years to come.
YB Pehin Hj Yahya will visit the coastal city of Qinzhou in the south of Guangxi today, to explore potential port-to-port cooperation.
The port of Qinzhou can currently handle a capacity of up to 100 million tons, and the actual throughput of its port in 2012 was 56.22 million tons.