On May 18, 2018, the 2018 EU-China Sustainable Urban Forum on Intelligent Technology Innovation (the 4th) themed "Sci-tech Innovation and Intelligent Manufacturing" was successfully held at the Meijiang Conference & Exhibition Center in Tianjin.
As one of the themed forums of the 2nd World Intelligence Congress, the 2018 EU-China Sustainable Urban Forum on Intelligent Technology Innovation was jointly hosted by the China Center for Urban Development (CCUD), China International Cities Development Alliance, Joint Programming Initiative Urban Europe (JPI UE), Tianjin Development and Reform Commission and the government of Tianjin Binhai New Area, co-organized by DG-RTD and undertaken by the administrative committee of Tianjin Free Trade Zone (administrative committee of Tianjin China-EU Advanced Manufacturing Industrial Park), under the guidance of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC). The forum was supported by the delegation of the European Union to China, European Union Chamber of Commerce in China, the task force of EU-China Innovative Platform on Sustainable Urbanisation and EU-China Industrial and Commercial Investment Promotion Union (ECIPU).
The opening ceremony was held on the morning of May 18. Welcome remarks were delivered by Peng Sen, deputy director of the Financial & Economic Committee of the 12th NPC and former deputy director of NDRC; Laurent Bochereau, Minister-Counselor of EU Delegation to China and representative of DG-RTD; Zhang Yuzhuo, member of the Standing Committee of Tianjin CPC Committee and secretary of Binhai New Area CPC Committee; Giovanni Brignone, counselor of the Embassy of Italy to China; Xu Lin, director of CCUD; Massimo Bagnasco, vice president of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China; and Wang Guoliang, director of the administrative committee of Tianjin Free Trade Zone.
In his speech, Peng Sen, deputy director of the Financial & Economic Committee of the 12th NPC and former deputy director of NDRC, said that implementing the innovation-driven development strategy was the inevitable choice for China to deal with the changing environment of development, grasp the initiative of development and improve its core competence. It is also an important strategic task for building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and basically realizing modernization. We should actively introduce EU's advanced technologies and experience in eco-protection, urban governance and smart city development, urge Chinese and European enterprises to jointly tap third-party markets, and push the China-EU cooperation in sustainable urbanization in a pragmatic way.
Laurent Bochereau, Minister-Counselor of EU Delegation to China and representative of DG-RTD, mentioned in his speech that the China-EU cooperation projects on sustainability were dedicated to improving people's livelihood, providing reasonable transport solutions, creating a hospitable living environment, and creating more opportunities for cultural and educational exchanges. We have put forth many innovative solutions, and both sides can learn from each other's successful experience in order to jointly tackle the future challenges.
Zhang Yuzhuo, member of the Standing Committee of Tianjin CPC Committee and secretary of Binhai New Area CPC Committee, introduced that the net exports between Tianjin's Binhai New Area and Europe has exceeded USD14.5 billion, involving more than 500 European enterprises including VW, Airbus, Siemens and SEW-Eurodrive. Under the China-EU cooperation mechanism, we have jointly built the China-EU Advanced Manufacturing Industrial Park in Tianjin, which offers a larger platform for us to work with the European industrial circle. We stand ready to make full use of this platform along with European enterprises, share the development opportunities and expand the scope of cooperation for win-win results and mutual benefits.
Giovanni Brignone, counselor of the Embassy of Italy to China remarked that Italy was a firm supporter of sustainable urbanization, energy development and environmental protection. Italy and China have had fruitful cooperation in the past, and this forum will further their pragmatic collaboration in relevant areas.
Xu Lin, director of the organizer CCUD under NDRC, held that the focus on the theme of "Intelligent Technology Innovation and Smart City Construction" and in-depth discussions of the paths and practice modes of urban intelligent technology innovation and intelligent development is of far-reaching significance for deepening the China-EU collaboration and promoting sustainable urban development. Going forward, we will continue to strengthen such cooperation platforms with EU, and more extensively and deeply share our experience and expertise in sustainable urban development with the support of the China International Cities Development Alliance and Research Institute for Sustainable Development. In this way, we can better understand the needs of cities and enterprises, continuously increase the number of sister cities on both sides and expand their scope of cooperation, and jointly create demonstrative examples for sustainable urban development.
According to Massimo Bagnasco, vice president of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China, innovation is very important for sustainable urban development and improving the quality of economic development. Also, innovation must be supported by good plans, and the plans must be beneficial for green development and the improvement of public welfare.
Wang Guoliang, director of the administrative committee of Tianjin Free Trade Zone, pointed out that the China-EU Advanced Manufacturing Industrial Park is positioned as a national demonstration park for advanced manufacturing and R&D, a benchmark for local cooperation between China and the EU, and a pioneer zone for the development of high-end industries. It will become the new engine for the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei integrated development and a national new platform for opening-up and cooperation, providing perfect infrastructure and investment services and environment for European investors.
Li Tie, CCUD chairman and chief economist, gave a keynote speech themed "Innovation in Urban Sharing Economy." According to Li, in the future China-EU cooperation on urbanization, we need to make more explorations with the various smart city innovations as new cooperation models; promote low-carbon, green and sustainable urban development by studying the sharing economy mode as it adapts to the technological revolution; and governments, enterprises and cities in China and the EU should summarize their own successful cases and experience of smart city economy.
The result of the forum was that the first China-EU Urban Research and Innovation Lab in China was selected by EU and settled in China-EU Advanced Manufacturing Industrial Park in Tianjin Binhai New Area Free Trade Zone. Additionally, China and the EU jointly selected six pairs of pragmatic urban projects. Chinese President Xi Jinping said that only peaceful development and cooperation will lead to win-win and multi-win results, and the cooperation between China and European cities is a living proof of this principle. At the forum, European enterprises noted that they paid close attention to China's urban development and hoped to continue the technological cooperation and market exploration with Chinese partners in this field.
Several special activities were held on the sidelines of the forum, covering such topics as "construction of international city clusters and Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei integrated development" and "smart city & intelligent technology innovation. A number of practical events were also held during the congress, including the "EU-China Symposium on Sustainable Urban Development", "China-EU Innovative Project Conference" and "China-Italy Aviation Industry Conference ".
Hundreds of people were invited to the forum, including representatives from Chinese and foreign governments, mayors, famous experts and scholars from home and abroad, representatives from world-renowned enterprises and press. They shared Chinese and European concepts and demonstrative models of sustainable urban development, exchanged their experience and approaches in city construction, and promoted the best practices.
Reporters from tens of media covered the event on site, including Xinhua News Agency, people.com.cn, Economic Daily, CCTV, China National Radio, China Daily, China Reform Daily, China News Service, National Business Daily, The Economic Observer, sina.com.cn, caijing.com.cn, 21st Century Business Herald and China Business Network.