“16+1 cooperation” International Symposium on China-Europe Relations Held at Sofia University

[Source]    Confucius Institute in Sofia, Bulgaria [Time]    2018-05-09 16:41:42 

On April 25 local time, the “16+1 cooperation” International Symposium on China-Europe Relations, co-organized by the Confucius Institute in Sofia, Bulgaria, and the Confucius Institute at Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) in Belgium, was held at Sofia University. A total of more than 150 experts and scholars from China, Bulgaria and other countries attended the symposium, including Deputy Minister of Education and Science Petar Nikolov of Bulgaria, President of Sofia University Anastas Gerdjikov and Chinese Ambassador to Bulgaria Zhang Haizhou.

The symposium was held during the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) and the meeting between the leaders of China-Central and Eastern European countries in Bulgaria. Petar Nikolov said in his speech that he hopes that the scholars present will support Bulgaria as the Presidency of the Council of the EU and help it give full play to promoting cooperation and development in such fields as diplomacy, politics, economy, and culture between Central and Eastern Europe and China.

In this symposium, Zhang Haizhou made a speech and stressed that “16+1 cooperation” is an indispensable part of China-Europe cooperative relations and has promoted more extensive and in-depth cooperation within the bloc.

Zhang Haizhou giving a speech

Vice President of Sofia University Maria Stoycheva gave a speech titled “European Studies Across Asian Universities”. She expressed that the project is a long-term plan initiated by the European Commission since 1990 for European higher education institutions to promote teaching and research in European integration studies and to encourage knowledge integration. It requires the joint efforts of scholars from all over the world.

The famous Bulgarian scholar Nako Stefanov shared his research results with a report titled “Economic Issues and Challenges in the Process of Post-industrial Paradigm under the New Normal of China’s Economy”. In the report, he analyzed a series of problems caused by the current rapid economic development in China.

Nako Stefanov sharing his papers

In addition, Chinese experts and scholars also had their turn. Professor Ding Chun of Fudan University gave a speech titled “China-Europe Economic Relations: Status quo, Problems and Perspectives”. He said that under the global environment, China-Europe bilateral relations will continue to develop.

Ding Chun giving a speech

Professor Huang Weiping of Renmin University of China, gave a speech titled “Comparing the Advantageous Bases of Cooperation between China and Eastern European Countries”, in which he put forward the basic advantages of cooperation between the two sides.

Professor Deng Xiang of Sichuan University delivered a speech on “the ‘Belt and Road Initiative’ and the China-Central and Eastern Europe Freight Train”. He illustrated the regional responsibilities and prospects in the development of China-Central and Eastern Europe freight trains.

Liu Chunrong, a professor from Fudan-European Centre for China Studies, discussed “political issues in the cooperation among Central and Eastern European countries: how the domestic environment affects” and analyzed China’s world outlook and social and political forces that support the building of connectivity between China and Central and Eastern Europe.

Liu Chunrong answering questions

In the Q&A section, the experts present answered all the questions raised by the audience.

The attendees

Song Xinning, Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute at VUB concluded that he hopes there will be more in-depth cooperation between China and Europe to promote win-win situation in all countries. This international symposium has aroused strong repercussions in the Bulgarian academic circles.

Story by Ge Zhiqiang and Hu Huaqian; photos by Li Ying