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China Willing to Expand ICT Cooperation with ASEAN Nations: Minister
China is willing to expand information and communication technology (ICT) cooperation with ASEAN (the Association of Southeast Asian Nations) nations to promote joint development in this field, a Chinese official said in Bangkok on Friday.

At the 3rd China-ASEAN Information and Communication Seminar kicked off here on Friday, Chinese Information Technology Industry Minister Wang Xudong said China is willing to carry out broader cooperation with ASEAN countries in the fields of network construction, business operation and government regulation and consultation.

"China and ASEAN nations have enjoyed long-term friendly cooperation in the economic and trade field. In recent years, the exchanges and cooperation in ICT sectors among related countries have yielded positive results," said Wang, referring to the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on ICT cooperation between China and ASEAN in Oct. 2003, which opened up a new chapter in the mutually beneficial cooperation among countries in the region.

Thanks to the concerted efforts from all these countries, cooperation stated in the memorandum have been carries out, said the minister.

Initiated by China, the building of a trunk communication network along the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) has received active response from ASEAN countries and the project was being pushed forward.

"As developing countries, China and ASEAN countries need to jointly promote information and communication development to adapt to the change of the global economic situation," said the minister, adding China's plan to train 500 telecom management personnel for ASEAN has got a good start.

Meanwhile, Thail Information and Communication Technology Minister Surapong Suebwonglee said in his welcome speech that the signing of the MOU between China and ASEAN countries is monumental and the framework will be discussed at the seminar.

Governmental officials, entrepreneurs and experts from China and ASEAN countries participated in the two-day seminar.

ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

(Xinhua News Agency August 6, 2004)

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