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Resources for China-ASEAN relations.

As a research institute based in Singapore, the EA1 monitors
developments in relations and interactions between China and
the individual countries of Southeast Asia as well as the
ASEAN grouping as a whole. This material is presented in the
form of: (1) a chronology of events, and (2) important documents

--the Editors

CHINA-ASEAN RELATIONS, APRIL 2008 TO SEPTEMBER 2008: CHRONOLOGY
OF EVENTS

Compiled by TENG Slow Song and LIM Chee Kia

       APRIL 2008

1st    Vietnam and China launch an international land cable
       transmission system built jointly by the China Netcom
       Group and Vietnam's Telecom International. It represents
       a new information superhighway between China and ASEAN
       and will promote co-operation within the China-ASEAN
       Free Trade Area.

       China and ASEAN jointly declare the opening of the China-ASEAN
       Expo Marketing Summit in Nanning. The Expo aims to explore
       effective ways to promote the China-ASEAN trade and bring
       experts together to discuss major issues concerning development
       of the Guangxi region.

4th    Guo Shengkun, Secretary of the Party Committee of China's
       Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region says that Ho Chi Minh (HCM)
       City plays an important role in the implementation of the
       Vietnam-China cooperation model of "Two corridors, one economic
       belt". At the Guangxi economic and commercial cooperation forum
       in HCM, he proposes boosting cooperation in implementation of
       agreements reached during the China-ASEAN Seaport Development
       Cooperation Forum in 2007.

8th    A total of 47 delegates from the government and private sectors
       in Guangxi visit Brunei Darussalam to explore business
       opportunities. The Brunei-China Friendship Association (BCFA)
       Deputy President Ang Swee Chuan, also plays host to the annual
       China-ASEAN Expo and speaks of the solid foundation that the
       Expo that has laid. He foresees that the Expo will be an ideal
       platform for those who vie for comprehensive economic
       opportunities among Brunei, China and other ASEAN countries.

       The Taiwan Ministry of Finance announces that Taiwan's exports
       in March grew 22.8 per cent year-on-year to an all-time high
       of USD24.25 billion. Hsu Ray-lin, Deputy Statistics Director
       at the Ministry, attributes the record exports to growth in
       shipments to Hong Kong, China, ASEAN, South Korea and India.

24th   Liu Yunshan, head of the Publicity Department of the Communist
       Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, meets media
       representatives from ASEAN nations. The representatives are
       on a visit to China to attend the China-ASEAN Summit Forum
       on Radio and Television.

28th   The China-ASEAN Business Council (CABC)'s quarterly report
       indicates that bilateral trade between China and ASEAN hit
       USD202.5 billion in 2007, surpassing a target of USD200 billion
       three years ahead of schedule. China-ASEAN bilateral trade
       reached USD54.4 billion in the first quarter of the year, up
       26.2 per cent from the same period last year. ASEAN countries
       seem to be reaping slightly more benefits so far. China
       imported USD28.8 billion worth of goods from ASEAN in the
       first quarter. Its exports to the region, on the other hand,
       accounted for the remaining USD25.61 billion, resulting in
       a trade deficit of USD3.19 billion for China.

       MAY

2nd    Another CABC report states that Malaysia was China's main
       trading partner among the ASEAN in the first quarter of the
       year with trade up 24 per cent and reaching USD12.2 billion.
       China-Malaysia trade accounted for 22 per cent of the overall
       trade with the ten-member grouping which totalled USD54.4
       billion, a rise of 26.2 per cent, between January and March.
       China's exports to Malaysia rose 33.3 per cent to USD4.74
       billion while imports increased 18.6 per cent to USD7.41
       billion, creating a surplus of USD2.67 billion for Malaysia,
       almost unchanged from the USD2.69 billion in same period in
       2007. The CABC data show China-Singapore trade was next on
       the list, growing by 11.8 per cent to USD11.4 billion with a
       surplus of USD2.52 billion for China. During the first
       quarter, China increased exports to ASEAN by 34.4 per cent
       to USD25.61 billion while imports saw a rise of 19.8 per cent
       to USD28.8 billion. China's top five ASEAN trading countries
       in 2007 were Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines and
       Indonesia, respectively.

6th    The Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman tells the
       leader of the Taiwanese military to halt a plan to visit the
       Truong Sa (Spratlys) archipelago. The Philippines say it is a
       provocative act on the part of Taiwan because it would violate
       the 2002 China-ASEAN Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in
       the South China Sea. Vietnam, Taiwan, China, the Philippines,
       Malaysia and Brunei each claim all or part of the oil-rich
       Spradys and the nearby Paracels, and all but Brunei have a
       military presence on one or more of the otherwise uninhabited
       atolls. In 2002, China signed a non-binding code of conduct
       agreement in Phnom Penh with the ten-member ASEAN to help ease
       the tension. They agreed to a ban on military activities in
       the Spratlys. Taiwan was not a signatory because China has
       insisted on a one- China policy.

9th    Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd calls Myanmar junta's
       obstruction of international efforts aimed at helping the
       country's hundreds of thousands of cyclone victims "obscene"
       and says he will urge China, ASEAN and others with leverage
       over the junta to apply more pressure on it.

       Guangxi and Thailand hold an economy and trade fair to further
       expand and deepen the cooperation activities between the two
       sides, as well as to offer services to business partners and
       further enhance the actual benefits from trade. Various
       high-level forums and meetings on Sino-ASEAN telecommunications
       cooperation are also concurrently held during the Fair; seven
       investment agreements worth USD120 million are expected to be
       signed, including the 5th China-ASEAN Expo cooperation agreement
       between Guangxi's Regional Expo Bureau and the Department of
       Export Promotion under Thailand's Ministry of Commerce.

12th   Laos and China agree to further their co-operation in radio and
       television. According to the agreement, the Lao side will allow
       China to build the Chinese Central Television (CCTV) network,
       channels 4 and 9 in the Lao PDR before the Olympic Games 2008,
       while the Chinese side will receive information from Laos for
       broadcasting on CCTV. The Chinese side will also help Laos
       improve its TV system.

16th   Vietnamese State President Nguyen Minh Triet receives 50 Chinese
       visitors for a Vietnamese-Chinese friendship get-together. The
       Chinese delegation comprises former Chinese ambassadors to
       Vietnam, those who directly served the late President Ho Chi
       Minh when he lived and worked in China and officials who have
       worked at President Ho Chi Minh memorial sites.

22nd   A Vietnamese business mission takes part in the fifth
       China-ASEAN Trade Fair in Nanning City (Guangxi) to boost
       trade and investment relations with China and the bloc.
       Participating Vietnamese enterprises introduce domestic key
       exports, seek business partners, access channels of
       distribution, investment, joint ventures and to take advantage
       of the benefits of the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area. ASEAN and
       China are hoping to build the world's largest free trade area,
       and Vietnam is greatly supportive of expanding the bilateral
       trade between the bloc and China.

26th   ASEAN Secretary-General Dr Surin Pitsuwan hosts the ASEAN-China
       Shaanxi Day in Indonesia. The event is to foster closer trade
       and business relations between ASEAN and China as part of the
       on-going efforts to realise the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area by
       2010. This event presents an opportunity for the business
       communities from ASEAN and China as well as others to
       appreciate the trade and investment prospects that the two
       regions offer. In particular, it showcases Shaanxi province,
       which is becoming an attractive investment location as Chinese
       authorities place more emphasis on the development of
       Western China.

       China-ASEAN Resources announces the resignation of Li Wo Hing
       as chief executive officer, and deputy chairman of the company
       with effect from 23 May 2008. He remains as an executive
       director, compliance officer and member of the remuneration
       committee. Zhang Zhenzhong is appointed as executive director,
       chief executive officer, and deputy chairman, while Alan Leung
       is appointed as executive director with effect from
       23 May 2008.

31st   Chinese President Hu Jintao meets Nong Duc Manh, General
       Secretary of the CPV Central Committee at the Great Hall of
       the People. The two sides appraise the progress made in the
       relations between the two parties and two countries and
       unanimously agree to work together to fully develop the
       Sino-Vietnamese strategic cooperative partnership under the
       16-character guiding principle of "long-term stability,
       orientation towards the future, good-neighbourliness and
       friendship, and all-round cooperation" as well as in the
       spirit of "being good neighbours, good friends, good
       comrades, and good partners".

       JUNE

2nd    Vietnam and China agree to intensify the efforts of the
       Vietnam-China Bilateral Co-operation Steering Committee and
       to build an exchange and co-operation mechanism between
       concerned agencies of the two parties. They agree to solve
       outstanding matters, accelerate work to complete planting on
       the two countries' borderline and sign a new document on
       border-management regulations in order to build a border
       of peace, friendship and co-operation. The two sides pledge
       to continue implementing agreements on co-operation in the
       Bac Bo (Tonkin) Gulf, the area off the Bac Bo Gulf and
       the East Sea.

5th    Construction work begins on the second and third phase of the
       China-ASEAN Free Trade Zone's RMB1.14 billion Pingxiang
       Logistics Park. It will cover 133.33 hectares (2,000 mu) upon
       completion in 2010. It will become China's largest logistics
       park with the best infrastructure, combining storage,
       distribution, transportation, packaging, assembly and
       processing, as well as information services.

12th   Vietnam was again Guangxi's largest trade partner in the first
       quarter of 2008. The bilateral trade value between the region
       and Vietnam more than doubled to USD890 million, accounting
       for 82.4 per cent of the region's foreign trade value. As a
       pioneer of the China-ASEAN cooperation, Guangxi has been
       cooperating with Vietnam in the last 20 years in planting,
       agricultural product processing, agricultural machinery
       manufacturing, power generation and sugar production.

17th   According to Guangxi's Ministry of Commerce, the total value
       of cargos that were declared qualified by Nanning Customs for
       import tariff relief or exemption surged by 93.68 per cent
       year-on-year to USD1.226 billion in the first four months of
       2008, with the tariff reduction rising by 22.42 per cent to
       478 million RMB. More specifically, the import tariff reduction
       for cargos under the coverage of conventional tariffs, mainly
       the China-ASEAN FTA conventional tariff, stood at 82.24
       million RMB in the period.

25th   China and ASEAN announce the establishment of a cultural and
       artistic exchange centre between China and ASEAN in Nanning.
       The ceremony draws more than 100 young artists from the ten
       ASEAN member countries that are joining the China-ASEAN Youth
       Camp 2008. The centre will become a common stage for young
       artists from China and the ASEAN countries and will contribute
       to the training and education of young artists
       from the two sides.

30th   Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao says he hoped China and Thailand
       will promote friendly exchanges and pragmatic cooperation
       during talks with Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej who
       is on a four-day official visit to China. Wen says China and
       Thailand have always supported each other and safeguarded
       their common interests since forging diplomatic ties
       33 years ago.

       JULY

2nd    Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej visiting Guangzhou
       endorses a number of contracts with China worth USD400
       million. They include deals for two Chinese enterprises to
       import USD280 million worth of rubber and USD140 million
       worth of fruit from Thailand. Samak says that the
       China-ASEAN trade agreements had played a great role in
       Thailand-China economic and trade relations.

10th   Chairman of the Straits Exchange Foundation Chiang Pin-Kung
       says at a seminar hosted by the Bureau of Trade that as Taiwan
       explores the possibility of free trade agreements (FTAs) with
       China, ASEAN and other major economies around the world, one
       of its priorities should be to pay attention to politically
       sensitive issues. Under President Ma Ying-jeou's cross-strait
       policy, the "common market" could be achieved by first promoting
       cross-strait economic and trade liberalization before developing
       an economic coordination system, and finally implementing
       total economic integration.

       A cross-strait common market arrangement could help Taiwan
       negotiate an FTA with ASEAN countries. Taiwan has tried in
       recent years to establish FTAs with major economies such the
       US, Japan, Singapore, Korea and ASEAN, but to no avail, due
       to political obstacles. Political and business leaders are
       concerned that Taiwan's exclusion from FTAs or regional
       economic and trade mechanisms could render it marginalised
       in the international community.

       Chiang says that Taiwan could follow Hong Kong's lead and sign
       a similar agreement with China to better promote Taiwan business
       on the Mainland. However, in a bid to alleviate fears that
       Taiwan's status would be denigrated in the negotiations with
       China, President Ma Ying-jeou has proposed that instead of
       the word "partnership" in the pact, Taiwan should aim for
       a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA)
       with China.

23rd   Foreign ministers from ASEAN meet to discuss further
       cooperation in integrated markets, climate change and regional
       security. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qn Gang says that
       ASEAN and China have agreed to enhance their cooperation in
       order to meet serious challenges posed by rising oil and food
       prices, the slowdown of the world economy, depreciation of
       the US dollar, rising trade protectionism and natural
       disasters. During the meeting, Chinese Foreign Minister Yang
       Jiechi says that China is willing to hold high-level dialogues
       with ASEAN member countries and exchange views on bilateral
       and major international issues. Yang says China will work
       closely with ASEAN to speed up the establishment of the
       ASEAN-China Free Trade Area as China attaches great importance
       to its ties with ASEAN and highly values ASEAN's role in
       contributing significantly to peace, stability and prosperity
       in the region and the promotion of common development.

30th   China plans to appoint its first ambassador to ASEAN to further
       strengthen bilateral strategic ties. China is satisfied with
       the bilateral ties with ASEAN and has great expectations.
       ASEAN also announces that five nations--Australia, China,
       Japan, New Zealand and Russia--are appointing ambassadors
       to the grouping.

       AUGUST

4th    ASEAN officials and experts attending a recent 2008 Pan-Beibu
       Gulf (PBG) Economic Cooperation Forum agree to accelerate PBG
       economic cooperation fusing into China-ASEAN collaboration to
       promote the regional economy. They conclude a package of
       contracts on cooperation in new energy exploration, tourism,
       air transportation, trade and investment. In 2007, China's
       trading volume with all Pan-Beibu Gulf nations reached
       USD199.27 billion, accounting for 98.4 per cent of China's
       total trade volume with ASEAN, totalling USD202.55 billion.

7th    ASEAN Ministers meet in Bangkok for the 26th ASEAN Ministers
       of Energy Meeting to discuss issues regarding energy
       stability, security and sustainability. They also adopt
       a roadmap for oil stockpiling.

10th   Khun Myint Tun, an exiled Myanmar lawmaker calls on
       President Arroyo to lead the ASEAN in taking a more prominent
       role with regards to his country. He says the Philippines must
       convince ASEAN to reject the Myanmar junta's
       roadmap to democracy.

20th   Visiting Senior Chinese legislator Zha Peixin calls for further
       cooperation between China's top legislature and the parliaments
       of ASEAN. Speaking at the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly's
       meeting, Zha, head of the Chinese parliamentarian delegation,
       says that the National People's Congress of China is willing
       to expand exchange and cooperation with the parliaments of
       ASEAN members in order to create a mutual beneficial
       and win-win situation.

29th   Officials of the ASEAN bloc say that ASEAN will try again to
       spark investor interest in a much-delayed railway link from
       Singapore to Kunming. ASEAN economic ministers say they will
       convene a conference and exhibition in early 2009 to
       publicise, promote and attract investment for the
       Singapore-Kunming Railway Link.

       SEPTEMBER

1st    ASEAN and dialogue partners China, South Korea and Japan plan
       to implement two new projects in 2008 under the ASEAN+3
       framework, covering small- and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs)
       and e-commerce. China briefs ASEAN economic ministers and their
       dialogue partners on the status of the two projects during the
       ASEAN Economic Ministers meeting.

5th    Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister Wong Kan Seng and Chinese
       Vice-Premier Wang Qshan announce the successful conclusion to
       two years of FTA negotiations during the 5th meeting of the
       Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation. The FTA will boost
       economic and trade ties between the two countries even further.

       A Memorandum of Cooperation was signed by Nicholas Tandi
       Dammen, Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN and Wan Qngliang,
       Vice Governor of Guangdong at the ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta.
       Under the Memorandum, the ASEAN Secretariat and Guangdong
       Province will explore and facilitate cooperation activities
       in various areas including agriculture, information and
       communications technology, trade and investment, tourism
       promotion, energy and environment, education and public
       health. To implement these activities, both sides will
       undertake regular consultations to promote dialogue and
       information exchange.

12th   Vietnam and China agree to set up a cooperation mechanism for
       ensuring food hygiene in trade, and exchange information and
       technicians in this field. An agreement to this effect was
       signed in Hanoi by Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Agriculture
       and Rural Development Luong Le Phuong and Chinese Deputy
       Director of the General Administration of Quality
       Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, Wei Chuanzhong.

24th   Thailand's Department of Foreign Trade reports that the Dumping
       and Subsidy Review Committee chaired by Commerce Minister
       Chaiya Sasomsab on 2 September 2008 resolved to impose
       anti-dumping (AD) measures on cotton and polyester woven
       textiles imported from China. These imports will be subject
       to either acceptance of punitive AD duties or collateral
       requirement on payment of tariff duties for a period of four
       months, effective after the announcement is published in the
       Government Gazette. The committee also extended the dumping
       investigation until 3 January 2009.

This chronology of events in ASEAN-China relations was sourced mainly
from the ASEAN Secretariat web <http://www.ASEANsec.org/>; The Straits
Times; Bangkok Post; Bernama (Barisan National News Agency);
Comparative Connections: An E-journal on EastAsian Bilateral
Relations <http://csis.org/pacfor/cc/>; Chinese Ministry of Foreign
Affairs <http:www.fmprc.gov.cn>; Far East Economic Review; Peoples'
Daily; South China Morning Post; Manila Standard; BBC; The Jakarta
Post; Borneo Bulletin; Associate Press Newswire and Xinhuanet
<http://www.xinhuanet.com>.
COPYRIGHT 2009 East Asian Institute, National University of Singapore
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Publication:China: An International Journal
Article Type:Calendar
Geographic Code:9CHIN
Date:Mar 1, 2009
Words:3011
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