Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi:

China's participation in Arctic affairs on basis of respect, cooperation

GMT 16:23 2015 Saturday ,17 October

Arab Today, arab today China's participation in Arctic affairs on basis of respect, cooperation

Foreign Minister Wang Yi
Reykjavic - Arab Today

China's participation in Arctic affairs has always been guided by three principles: respect, cooperation and win-win, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Friday.

Addressing the opening of the three-day Arctic Circle Assembly in a video message, Wang said China was an important stakeholder in the Arctic.

A high-level Chinese delegation, headed by Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Ming, attended the assembly and hosted a country session themed "China's contribution".

Describing China as a "near-Arctic state," Zhang said the changing natural environment and resources exploration of the Arctic have a direct impact on China's climate, environment, agriculture, shipping, trade as well as social and economic development.

"Therefore, China is a major stakeholder in the Arctic," Zhang said.

China started to turn its eyes to the Arctic as early as 90 years ago. In 1925, it acceded to the Svalbard Treaty, which marked the beginning of China's participation in Arctic affairs.

Since the 1990s, China's involvement in Arctic activities has been expanding both in depth and breadth.

Elaborating on China's Arctic activities and specific policies regarding Arctic issues, Zhang said: "What has happened shows that China is a constructive participant in and partner of cooperation in Arctic affairs."

"Going forward, China is willing and able to make even greater contribution to the sustainable development of the Arctic."

The Chinese delegation presented China's practices in scientific research, shipping, oil and gas exploration as well as research on climate change in the Arctic during the country session.

A photo exhibition named "China and the Arctic" was launched at the Assembly.

The Arctic Circle Assembly was founded in 2013 at the initiative of President of Iceland Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, former prime minister of Greenland Kuupik Kleist, and Alaska Dispatch Publisher Alice Rogoff.

The annual event is regarded as one of the largest international gatherings concerning the Arctic, drawing 1,500 participants from more than 50 countries and regions this year.

Source: XINHUA

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