During the 7th Silk Road International Expo (SRIE) in northwest China’s Xi’an City, Central Asian countries were seeking more business opportunities in the Chinese market by showcasing a large variety of local products in their country pavilions.
“By participating in the SRIE, we not only bring a variety of distinctive products but also aim to promote Uzbekistan’s unique culture further,” said an Uzbekistan businessman who has lived in China for 17 years and uses the Chinese name Zhang Cong. “This will enable Shaanxi to understand Uzbekistan better, fostering mutual exchange and cooperation between the two sides.”
For the first time, the exposition has an exclusive exhibition zone set for exhibits from the five Central Asian states, highlighting their national features, culture, and specialty products. The exhibits displayed at the exclusive exhibition zone cover food, handicrafts, jewelry, and other products from Central Asian states. The sales of such special commodities not only meet the purchasing needs of visitors but also provide more opportunities for economic and trade cooperation between China and the Central Asian countries.
The venue is segmented into five main exhibition areas, representing Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. The overall decorative style accentuates the charm of Central Asia, underlining the openness approach to create a new chapter of international cooperation through collaborative creation and construction.
Tajikistan and Azerbaijan are the guest of honor countries at this year’s SRIE. In the Tajikistan exhibition area, a variety of locally sourced products, including pomegranates, honey, fruit juice, walnuts, and dried apricots, captivated numerous visitors, who seized the chance to sample these products and gain insights into their origins. Over at the Azerbaijan exhibition area, visitors were treated to local specialties like pomegranate juice and delicious coffee.
As the Belt and Road Initiative progresses, particularly following the successful China-Central Asia Summit in Xi’an, trade and investment between Shaanxi and Belt and Road countries and regions continue to strengthen.
From January to September this year, the trade volume between Shaanxi and Belt and Road countries and regions was over $21 billion, showing a growth of 2.1 times in trade with the Central Asian region. In the initial three quarters, Shaanxi achieved a turnover of $840 million in contracted projects with Belt and Road countries and regions, accounting for nearly 80 percent of the province’s total turnover in foreign contracted projects during the same period, according to the provincial commerce department.
Since its launch, the SRIE has achieved fruitful results in building a highland of reform and opening up and promoting the large-scale development of China’s western region in the new era. The previous six expositions attracted over 600,000 visitors. During that period, the total contracted investment amount in foreign projects and domestic joint projects reached $45.4 billion and over 8 trillion yuan, respectively.