• Shanghai is now the "world's meeting room"

    On October 29, Li Qiang, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and secretary of the Shanghai Municipal Party Committee, met with the main guests of the World Laureates Forumat Shanghai Tower. Li said that Times Square in New York is called the “crossroads of the world,”while the two sides of Huangpu River in Shanghai will be built into the "meeting room of the world.”

    The "world's meeting room" is the best way to describe Shanghai at the moment as the world counts down to the start of the first China International Import Expo. At arecently-held press conference, Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Bingnan said that politicians from more than 130 countries as well as heads of relevant international organizations, global business leaders, and well-known experts and scholarswill attend the opening ceremony, along with 1,500 delegates from domestic ministries and regional institutes. It’s right to describe the grand event with the traditional Chinese saying that "guests and friends fill up the room".

    As another saying goes, “It’s a pleasure to have friends visiting from afar." The Chinese people have been hospitable since ancient times and this tradition of hospitality has been repeatedly expressed in Chinese literature. We can view Shanghai as a form of opening-up and CIIE as a gathering place for friends. Shanghai not only has a unique geographical advantage to host the first CIIE, but it also stand out among other Chinese cities with the well-known opening-up "gene." As the world's first import-themed state-level exhibition, it is no accident that CIIE was born in China. And it’s only natural that Shanghai, the city of opening-up, will host the first CIIE.

    Chinese President Xi Jinping emphasized that CIIE is not a general exhibition, but a policy announcement of China’s initiative to further open its market, and that relevant departments should carefully organize the event to make it a world-class expo. To realize that goal and to play the good role of the “world’s meeting room,” Shanghai has been fully committed to mobilizing the whole city and not letting go of any problem or missing any details. All tasks have been properly organized and implemented to the end. Throughout all of the work, Shanghai has adhered to the highest standards, taking up a working style that was both fast and practical as well as excellent. Just as Li Qiang, secretary of the Shanghai Municipal Party Committee, said, it is necessary to pursue excellence and adopt a pragmatic work style and for everyone to shoulder their responsibility to go all out to host a world-class expo.

    Many major events will be hosted at CIIE and a number of important guests will receive a high reception. In fact, it’s reportedly the largest number of important guests in Shanghai’s history. In this regard, Shanghai has stayed true to the five aspects of reception, transportation, accommodation, food, and transfer, aiming to create a first-class experience. Since September, Shanghai has carried out three comprehensive urban security drills and more than 200 special drills, constantly adjusting and optimizing measures to improve the level of service. City management should be as fine as embroidery. With a big focus and a small starting place, making a world-class expo not only reflects Shanghai's hospitality, but also helps people feel Shanghai's civilized temperament.

    In China we say that to love people and treat neighbors kindly are most valuable to a country. Shanghai’s strive to become the "world's meeting room" not only shows itself in providing warm places and excellent services, but also in promoting the spirit of inclusiveness and opening-up. As we all know, Shanghai's city spirit refers to the pursuit of excellence, open-minded wisdom, and modest courtesy. Inclusiveness and opening are needed both in becoming the leader and pioneer in China’s reform and opening-up in the new era, but also in becoming the “world’s meeting room.”

    In China we also say that those with the same ideals think nothing of a long and arduous journey. At present, some countries are pursuing trade protectionism, and international unilateralism is on the rise. The hosting of CIIE is not only an important measure for the Chinese government to open its market and expand imports, but also a policy announcement that China’sgate that is opening wider and wideras well as a solid action to uphold the multilateral trading system. As the vanguard of China's reform and opening-up, Shanghaihas every reason to believe that the "world's meeting room" will become more and more popular and Shanghai's new gold business card. Taking the opportunity of CIIE, China is even more convinced that its door is opening wider and the people of all countries will reapmore steady benefits as they ride on the free and fast train developed by China.

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