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|Saturday, October 21, 2000, updated at 11:13(GMT+8)|
Western Forum of China Opens in Chengdu
The forum attracted over 500 guests including over 20 Chinese officials at the ministerial level, leaders from various provinces,foreign diplomats and scholars at home and abroad.
Representatives from 120 world renowned enterprises, 89 enterprises from the Chinese inland and representatives from about 100 enterprises in Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao also attended the unparalleled gathering, according to the organizing committee.
Chinese President Jiang Zemin wrote the forum title to congratulate the forum.
Yang Rudai and Chen Jinhua, vice-chairmen of the Ninth National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, attended the opening banquet of the forum.
Addressing the opening banquet, Chen Jinhua hailed the important role the forum to play in the development of the west.
Bob Hawke, former prime minister of Australia, delivered a speech at the banquet, saying that China's policy of developing the west has drawn concerns from all across the globe.
According to an on-line survey, 34.8 percent of surfers believe that the forum will publicize the strategy of developing the west across the world, and 29.3 percent believe the forum will attract
some foreign funds for the strategy.
The forum is jointly organized by the Western China Development Office and the Information Office of the State Council, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation and the Sichuan Provincial Government.
It will be held annually from now on, according to the organizing committee.
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