Rokiah Mahmud in Nanning, China
Since the introduction of the ‘Cities of Charm’ exhibition at the 2nd China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO), relations between China and ASEAN have further developed from the national level to the urban and rural levels, with economic and trade cooperation becoming increasingly profitable.
This year’s exhibition focussed on tourism packages and information that have the potential to boost tourist arrivals, investment policies and environment of the participating cities, and comprehensively demonstrates multi-field cooperation opportunities among the participating countries.
The ‘Cities of Charm’ at the 16th CAEXPO were identified as follows: Chengdu (China), Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei), Kampot Province (Cambodia), Indonesian Isles, Champasak Province (Lao PDR), Selangor (Malaysia), Magway Region (Myanmar), Santos General City (the Philippines), Singapore, Buri Ram Province (Thailand) and An Giang Province (Vietnam).
Bandar Seri Begawan was chosen due to its rapid and vibrant development over the years, with popular landmarks such as the Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Mosque, the Royal Regalia Museum, the central clock located at the heart of the capital and the Mercu Dirgahayu located at the Dermaga Diraja, marking the 60th birthday celebration of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam.
In addition, visitors to Bandar Seri Begawan’s City of Charm Pavilion were offered a range of sightseeing packages and brochures on the points of interest in Brunei-Muara, Tutong, Belait and Temburong districts.
Representatives from The Empire Hotel & Country Club and Mulia Hotel were also present in Nanning, China to promote tourism and hotel packages.
Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, as the host for the annual expo has expanded its ‘Cycle of Friends’ in the international member community, with the support of the Cities of Charm. Six ASEAN countries have set up consulates in Nanning. They are Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Malaysia.