13th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum starts in Macao
Published: Sep 29, 2022 12:32 AM
Guests pose for a picture at the opening ceremony of the 13th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum on September 28, 2022 in Macao. Photo: Courtesy of IIICF

Guests pose for a picture at the opening ceremony of the 13th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum on September 28, 2022 in Macao. Photo: Courtesy of IIICF

The 13th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum (IIICF) opened in China's Macao Special Administrative Region (SAR) on Wednesday. The forum, themed Co-building Infrastructure of High Standard, Sustainability and Benefit to People's Livelihoods, mainly focuses on issues including financial innovation, green and low carbon growth, and digital applications.

The two-day forum, which is co-organized by the China International Contractors Association and the Macao Trade and Investment Promotion Institute (IPIM), hosts more than 1,300 participants.

The participants at the forum include officials from government departments, representatives from 20 financial institutions, more than 70 of the world's top 250 international contractors and more than 600 enterprises in the infrastructure industry from different regions of the world.

Li Fei, assistant minister of commerce, said in a video speech that in 2021, China's foreign investment and cooperation overcame the impact of the pandemic and achieved stable and healthy development, adding that China's foreign direct investment reached $178.8 billion in 2021, a year-on-year increase of 16 percent.

It is hoped that China and other countries will step up the construction of exchange partnerships for closer interconnection. Enterprises should be supported to actively apply green, low-carbon, environmental protection and other technologies. International cooperation in green infrastructure should be deepened further and the development of new infrastructure should be pushed forward, Li noted.

Fang Qiuchen, chairman of China International Contractors Association, said at the opening ceremony that the association is willing to join hands with all parties to participate in the construction of infrastructure connectivity in countries and regions along the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), complement each other's advantages, achieve mutual benefit and win-win results, and jointly promote the technological progress and high-quality development of the industry.

Wang Shouwen, vice commerce minister, said in a video speech at China-Latin America Infrastructure Cooperation Forum held concurrently with the IIICF that infrastructure construction, a key area and priority direction of China-Latin America economic and trade cooperation, should gather new momentum and explore new cooperation models in face of new challenges.

The forum also released the Belt and Road Infrastructure Development Index 2022 and The Belt and Road Infrastructure Development Index Report 2022, which provides scientific reference data and guidance on trends in the field of international infrastructure cooperation, as well as new trends and characteristics in the infrastructure industry around the world.

At the launch ceremony of the Belt and Road Infrastructure Development Index 2022 at the forum, Fang said that driven by factors such as the economic recovery of various countries and the weakening of the impact of the pandemic, the infrastructure development environment of countries along the BRI has gradually improved, and the index has risen from 113 last year to 114 this year.

Suhail Mohamed Al Mazrouei, minister of energy and infrastructure of the UAE, Wee Ka Siong, minister of transport of Malaysia, Md. Mahbub Ali, minister of state of the ministry of civil aviation and tourism of Bangladesh, and Jo?o Baptista Borges, minister of energy and water resources of Angola, all delivered video speeches at the opening ceremony on topics including BRI cooperation and promoting high-quality sustainability of international infrastructure development.

As one of the first countries to join the BRI and a founding member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the UAE has invested in more than 650 projects in China. More than 4,000 Chinese companies have established businesses in the UAE, creating more than 400,000 jobs. It is believed that infrastructure construction will provide more precious opportunities for future cooperation, said Suhail Mohamed Al Mazrouei via video link.

The scale of the exhibition has increased by about 20 percent compared with the previous session, bringing together many important enterprises in the industry and industry chain to participate in the exhibition, and setting up a business matching and negotiation area, integrating the functions of exhibition, project matching and conference negotiation, to provide all-round support for exhibitors.

With the aim of co-building high quality infrastructure to improve sustainability, the forum brings together different enterprises from the industry and relevant supply chains. To provide all-round support for participating enterprises, the forum provides business matching areas for enterprises to showcase their projects and services, connect with prospective partners, and conduct business meetings.