Asian leaders call for regional economic cooperation at Boao Forum

Nov 03, 2003 Ι Industry In-Focus Ι Furniture Ι By Judy, CENS
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Taipei, Nov. 3, 2003 (CENS)--The annual conference of Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) 2003 kicked off yesterday at Boao of Hainan Province, mainland China, with participants from various Asian countries to exchange views on how to reinforce economic cooperation ties among Asian countries and between Asia and other parts of the world.

Vincent Siew, chief economics advisor to President Chen shui-bian, is the only participant from Taiwan in the meeting. Among the key speakers are Fidel V. Ramos, chairman of the BFT & former President of the Philippines, Goh Chok Tong, Prime Minister of Singapore, and Wen Jiabao, Primer of mainland China's State Council, Siew was also invited to give a lecture during the conference.

In his speech, Siew raised the concept of building a common market in Asia, stressing that WTO members in Asia have obvious ramifications in economic cooperation and integration and, moreover, uncertainty in regional safety. He suggested that Asian nations should have the consensus in forming the ideology of "common community" and establishing an effective and fair mechanism for every member to participate in the community and communicate with each other.

Wen of Beijing called for solutions for the problems existing in the nations and regions in Asia including economic conflicts, financial structures, environmental protection, and international competitiveness. He urged that Asian nations should strengthen economic cooperation and information exchanges to reach the win-win goal.

Goh of Singapore pointed out that Asia boasts the fastest economic growth in the world today and its total gross domestic product (GDP) is 150% that of the United States. He reminded Asian nations to keep the regional strength by further enhancing complimentary economic activities and cooperation.
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