Chengdu Museum’s path to international cooperation

Chengdu Museum Photo: Screenshot from webiste

The Chengdu Museum Photo: Screenshot from webiste


The Chengdu Museum has joined hands with the Louvre Museum and the British Museum to explore future cooperation. On the eve of International Museum Day, Chengdu Museum launched in-depth cooperation discussions with these two world-class museums through online conferences.

The Chengdu Museum and the Louvre Museum discussed cooperation matters such as exhibition exchanges and talent training through an online meeting on the afternoon of May 14th. The Louvre Museum expressed its appreciation for the Chengdu Museum’s ability to attract large audiences and raised hopes of deepening the partnership through the introduction of high-quality exhibitions over the next five years. The initial plan is to promote a series of exhibitions that can reflect better times and people’s lives in France to Chengdu in 2026-2027.

The Louvre’s classic exhibitions will be actively introduced to the Chengdu Museum in the next three years, providing Chengdu citizens with the opportunity to experience the cultural charm of romantic France at their doorstep.

The following day, an online meeting between the Chengdu Museum and the British Museum was also successfully held. During the meeting, the two parties had a detailed discussion on the themes and directions of future exhibitions. The British Museum recognizes the Chengdu Museum’s international exhibitions and exchange activities.

In the past few years, the Chengdu Museum has maintained close cooperation with top museums in France, the United Kingdom, and other places. The Chengdu Museum said it will continue to play its role as a bridge for cultural exchanges, committed to introducing more high-quality exhibitions, promoting cultural exchanges, and contributing to Chengdu’s creation of a world-famous cultural city.

China-Serbia community with shared future in the new era is promising: Global Times editorial

Children welcome Chinese President Xi Jinping in Belgrade, Serbia, May 7, 2024. Xi arrived in Belgrade on Tuesday to pay a state visit to Serbia. Photo: Xinhua

Children welcome Chinese President Xi Jinping in Belgrade, Serbia, May 7, 2024. Xi arrived in Belgrade on Tuesday to pay a state visit to Serbia. Photo: Xinhua

On Wednesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic at the Palace of Serbia in Belgrade. The two leaders decided to deepen and elevate the comprehensive strategic partnership between China and Serbia, and build a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era. For the two countries and peoples, this is a significant event. Over the past few decades, the two countries have understood, trusted, supported, and helped each other in times of adversity, becoming true friends and close brothers. The upgrading of the two countries’ political relationship has come naturally, opening a new chapter in history.

President Xi visited Serbia again after eight years, receiving a grand and warm welcome. The national flags of China and Serbia flew along the highway from Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport all the way to the city center of Belgrade. Banners showing “Welcome President Xi” and “Warm welcome to endeared Chinese friends” were prominently displayed. Thousands of Serbian people shouted “China” and “Serbia” in front of the Palace of Serbia, showing their genuine emotions, which deeply touched and moved the Chinese society.

China and Serbia enjoy “ironclad friendship,” which is extraordinary in the ever-changing international relations. The ironclad friendship between China and Serbia has been tempered by blood and fire. In 1999, NATO bombed the then Federal Republic of Yugoslavia; in 2008, China experienced a major earthquake in Wenchuan, Southwest China’s Sichuan Province; in 2014, Serbia suffered severe floods; and in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic broke out. The two countries and their peoples always extend a helping hand without hesitation when the other is in need, and this true friendship of mutual assistance cannot be eroded by time. The fundamental reason lies in the mutual respect, equal treatment, and high mutual trust between the two countries.

The interaction between China and Serbia is phenomenal and should be a subject of research in international relations. For those obsessed with “great power competition” and “clash of civilizations,” it should especially stimulate their thinking and reflection. Despite the vast distance, different social systems, and diverse cultural backgrounds, China and Serbia are able to resonate and reach consensus on international affairs, national development, and national sentiments. They have formed a close interdependence on the basis of independence, which is a breath of fresh air in the current international community plagued by a “trust deficit,” setting an example for state-to-state relations.

Observing the relationship between China and Serbia, two characteristics can be discerned. First, the interactions and cooperation between the two countries serve the well-being of both nations and their peoples. China and Serbia firmly support each other’s core interests and major concerns. China supports Serbia’s efforts to uphold national sovereignty and territorial integrity, opposing any interference in Serbia’s internal affairs by external forces. Serbia steadfastly adheres to the one-China principle and supports China in safeguarding its own sovereignty and territorial integrity. On the core issue of safeguarding national unity and opposing territorial separatism, the two countries share a high degree of consensus.

Meanwhile, cooperation between the two countries is deeply rooted at the grassroots level. Within just a few months of investment by a Chinese company, the Smederevo Steel Plant has turned losses into profits, ensuring job security for over 5,000 employees and now standing as Serbia’s third-largest exporting enterprise. The municipal sewage treatment project “Clean Serbia,” undertaken by China Road and Bridge Corporation, will benefit 2.3 million Serbian citizens. As a key project under the framework of China’s cooperation with Central and Eastern European countries in building the Belt and Road Initiative, the Belgrade-Novi Sad section of the Hungary-Serbia Railway in Serbia is bringing about “revolutionary changes” in Serbia’s transportation sector. For the people of both countries, the cooperation is not empty talk but tangible win-win outcomes.

Second, China-Serbia cooperation, whether for the region or the globe, is a positive force. As ironclad friends and upholders of world peace, the two countries share similar positions on many significant international and regional issues. In international organizations such as the United Nations and various major multilateral events, they cooperate closely, jointly advocating for a fair and orderly multipolar world, and inclusive and equitable economic globalization. They practice genuine multilateralism. Confronted with the complex and tumultuous international landscape, both nations join hands to oppose hegemonism and power politics, striving to safeguard global peace, stability, and international fairness and justice.

What sustains the development of relations between China and Serbia is a high degree of political mutual trust. Both countries do not allow ideological differences and value systems to create rifts, nor do they engage in “de-risking” or pan-politicization. Instead, they listen to each other’s concerns, respect and support each other’s development paths and national rejuvenation. It is on this foundation that mutual trust can continue to accumulate, mutual understanding can be cultivated, and the space and willingness for cooperation can grow. From politics, economics, to culture and society, the abundant fruits of China-Serbia exchanges are rooted in the political mutual trust.

President Xi Jinping announced six measures to support the building of a China-Serbia community with a shared future, as he jointly met the press with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic on Wednesday. This signifies the comprehensive expansion of the long-standing friendly exchanges and mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Serbia. A Chinese axiom goes, “Friends are those who are like-minded”; and Serbians would say, “Friends are the greatest asset in life.” Under the strategic guidance of the two countries’ leaders, the ironclad friendship between China and Serbia will continue to flourish, benefiting the peoples of both nations, promoting world peace and development, and jointly advancing the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.

Hungary-Serbia railway could inspire divided world as protectionism rises

Illustration: Liu Xiangya/GT

Illustration: Liu Xiangya/GT

The construction of the Hungary-Serbia railway, a flagship project of the China-proposed Belt and Road initiative (BRI), will help inject new impetus into the economies of the two countries. The railway, plus the China-Serbia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) signed in 2023, may provide people with a new perspective on the increasingly fragmented global trade situation.

As reported by the Xinhua News Agency on Sunday, Serbia’s Minister of Construction, Transport and Infrastructure Goran Vesic said that Serbia’s participation in the BRI has boosted the overall development of the country and its neighbors. He cited the construction of the Hungary-Serbia railway as an example of successful BRI cooperation.

The Hungary-Serbia railway is a double-track electrified railway with a total length of 341.7 kilometers, including 183.1 kilometers in Serbia. Sitting at the crossroads of Central and Southern Europe – and often seen as a geographical region that straddles both Eastern and Western Europe – Serbia has unique geographical advantages. The construction of the railway is expected to improve connectivity between Hungary and Serbia and help clear barriers from Serbia to Greece’s Piraeus Port, a transit hub connecting Europe, Asia and Africa.

The Hungary-Serbia railway is considered an important project to improve physical connectivity, as part of multifaceted cooperation aimed at deepening economic exchanges. 

Connectivity includes not only physical infrastructure like roads and railways but also institutional arrangements to make it easier to strengthen exchanges among different regions.

China and Serbia signed an FTA in October 2023. The signing of the FTA and subsequent tariff cuts have enhanced trade relations, boosted Serbia’s exports and – more importantly – served as a bridge to open up new trade routes and ramp up trade and investment between China and Europe. 

Trade between China and Europe reached $1.215 trillion in 2023. Both sides have strong trade complementarity, and unleashing this potential can generate more positive influences on Europe’s economy, helping solve problems it faces, such as stubborn inflation. 

The lingering question is how to unleash this huge potential. There are two critical factors. On the one hand, we should continue to promote infrastructure interconnectivity; on the other hand, we should take concrete actions to reject all forms of protectionism and unequivocally advocate for and support free trade.

Facing a complex and volatile international situation, China and Serbia, acting as each other’s “ironclad friends,” have continuously enhanced cooperation in multiple fields such as railway infrastructure construction and free trade. These factors interact with one another, forming a joint force to boost economic cooperation.

The nature of cooperation is mutually beneficial, and that’s why the Serbian side holds a positive attitude toward cooperation with China. Vesic said Serbia is proud of its participation in the BRI, under which Chinese companies have undertaken many infrastructure projects in the country.

The construction of the Hungary-Serbia railway reached a milestone on April 25, when the track-laying work for a 108-kilometer section between Novi Sad and Subotica in Serbia was completed. It’s not always easy to undertake large-scale infrastructure projects, and the construction of the Hungary-Serbia railway faces some challenges, but the project has been steadily advancing. That’s because this is good for the Serbian economy, which could benefit greatly from infrastructure projects.

Amid global economic uncertainty, various countries, including those in Europe, are trying to gain new growth momentum as traditional drivers weaken. What is needed today is to improve economic connectivity and further promote free trade. As long as cooperation can bring tangible economic benefits to local economies, it will eventually overcome temporary challenges and difficulties.

The US-advocated “decoupling” and Washington’s geopolitical games have brought enormous challenges to global trade, but globalization and free trade are the only ways to promote mutually beneficial cooperation. Politicians with a sober mind will not politicize economic issues and not fall into the “decoupling from China” trap.

The author is a reporter with the Global Times. [email protected]

Trade with China mainly settled in yuan, rubles: Russian deputy PM

Aerial photo taken on Feb. 21, 2021 shows the first China-Europe freight train linking St. Petersburg of Russia with Chengdu departing the Chengdu International Railway Port in Chengdu, southwest China's Sichuan Province. Photo: Xinhua

Aerial photo taken on February 21, 2021 shows the first China-Europe freight train linking St. Petersburg of Russia with Chengdu departing the Chengdu International Railway Port in Chengdu, Southwest China’s Sichuan Province. Photo: Xinhua

About 92 percent of trade settlement between Russia and China is now conducted in Russian rubles and Chinese yuan, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexei Overchuk said on Wednesday at the ongoing Boao Forum for Asia in South China’s Hainan Province.

He also said that Russia hopes to strengthen financial ties with other countries to replace the US dollar in the international arena in the future, in a bid to ensure the stability and security of local currencies.

Overchuk’s remarks came amid growing emphasis by both sides on trade in local currency and de-dollarization efforts in a bid to reduce risks and costs. In July 2023, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced at the 23rd Meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization that over 80 percent of trade settlement between Russia and China was conducted in Russian rubles and Chinese yuan, according to media reports.

Bilateral trade between China and Russia continues to show upward momentum, reaching $240.1 billion in 2023, up 26.3 percent from a year earlier. The figure was over $190 billion in 2022, with energy taking the key share.

China-Russia relations are a model of relations between major powers. When talking about the relationship between Russia and China, Overchuk emphasized that the dynamic and stable relationship between the two countries is based on mutual respect, equality, and years of profound historical exchanges between the two governments. Russia will continue to promote the growth of trade between the two countries and advance new interconnection projects, he said.

One of the prominent changes over the past 50 years has been the rise of the Global South, Overchuk said while addressing a sub-forum titled “The Rise of the Global South.” Faced with increasing global uncertainty, countries from the Global South should strengthen cooperation and unite to meet challenges, he said.

Overchuk also pointed out Russia’s willingness to strengthen cooperation with countries in the Global South in the field of cross-border trade and transportation infrastructure construction, saying that Russia hopes to expand market access and push for the building of international transportation corridors.

“We are currently seeing signs of anti-globalization and rising trade fragmentation in global markets, which requires us to strengthen cooperation and connections with our neighboring countries,” said Overchuk.

2024 marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Russia. The determination of China and Russia to work together hand in hand is even stronger, the foundation of generational friendship is more solid, and the prospects for comprehensive cooperation are even broader, Zhang Hanhui, the Chinese Ambassador to Russia, said in an interview with Tass on March 21.