A delegation of governments experts from China, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia and Indonesia participated at the IUC Global Event in Brussels on 10 November 2018. The delegation included the Director General of NDRC, the Mayors of Jambi (Indonesia) and Iskandar (Malaysia) as well as representatives from cities, city networks and institutes from Korea and Indonesia.
Chinese mission to Belgium, the Czech Republic and Italy
From 8 – 16 October 2018, a Chinese delegation led by National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) conducted a mission to the EU, with the main agenda including the participation at the second IUC Global Event in Brussels (Belgium) and working visits to Prague (Czech Republic) and Reggio Emilia (Italy).
The Chinese delegation was led by Mr. GUO Lanfeng, Director General of Regional Economy Department of NDRC and comprised of 6 other representatives from NDRC, and sub-national DRCs of Shaanxi province, Henan province, Chongqing Municipality and Zhengzhou city. All the regions and cities are pilot regions selected to cooperate with their European counterparts under the IUC Asia Programme.
At the annual gathering of global stakeholders of the IUC Programme, Hilde Hardeman, Head of Service of the European Commission’s Service for Foreign Policy Instruments delivered an opening speech. “The IUC programme is an ambitious one. It asks cities and regions to go beyond borders to share knowledge, establish relationships and find solutions. We are delighted that delegates from China, India, Japan and North and South America have travelled to Brussels to discuss their sustainable urban development activities,” she said.
The Global Event, as part of the activities during the European Week of Regions and Cities, gave the delegates the chance to discuss ongoing sustainable urban development pilot projects with global partners. Mr. GUO Lanfeng delivered a keynote speech on behalf of NDRC, the comprehensive economy planner ministry in China. He introduced Chinese regional policies, the challenges faced by China in tackling with uncoordinated regional development, and suggestions to further the EU-China regional cooperation.
At a small-scale meeting at the sidelines of the European Week, Mr. GUO met with Mr. Marc Lemaître, the Director-General of DG REGIO, to discuss three steps to push forward the EU-China Regional Cooperation Mechanism:
- Upgrade the EU-China Regional Cooperation to a high level –as the main forum of EU-China Leaders Summit 2019
- Launch a joint study on Regional Innovation / Smart Specialization
- Deepen and expand the regional cooperation dialogue
Afterwards, the delegation conducted work missions to Prague, where the meetings were held with the Ministry of Regional Development of Czech Republic and the Czech Institute of Informatics, Robotics, and Cybernetics of the Czech Technical University (https://www.ciirc.cvut.cz/). At the Ministry of Regional Development, the Chinese delegates had the chance to learn the implementation of EU Cohesion Policy in Czech Republic, project-based application process at the regional level, as well as the monitoring and evaluation process on the results of the projects and policy implementation. Following that, at the Institute of Informatics, Robotics, and Cybernetics, the delegates discussed the potential of cooperation in the field of automation, AR, IoT, city of future, etc.
As the last stop. Reggio Emilia welcomed the delegation. In the whole-day program, the delegation was shown to the city council premise to exchange with the city councilor on international cooperation programs, to the Loris Malaguzzi International Center to learn the locally-originated pre-education approach, and lastly to the Technopole to know the innovation and research initiatives in the university labs located in the innovation park.