The 10th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum (IIICF) officially kicked off at the Venetian Macao yesterday, with Macau Chief Executive Chui Sai On expressing his hope it would promote the “high quality and efficient interconnection” of the Greater Bay Area (GBA).
During his speech at yesterday’s opening ceremony, Chui said that he hopes the 10th IIICF will discuss “the development of the Greater Bay Area, promote the high quality and efficient interconnection of the Greater Bay Area, and build it into an important supporting area for the Belt and Road Initiative [BRI].”
According to the forum’s program, this year there will be one session specifically related to the Greater Bay, which in turn, will involve Macau. Most of the talks address the BRI as well as China’s cooperation with other countries in terms of infrastructure development.
One of yesterday’s major sessions was “Dialogue with Senior Management from MDBs: Investment in Quality and Sustainable Infrastructure.” The five speakers of this session gave talks on China, in particular, on Africa and Asia.
One of the speakers, Lawrence J. Lau, a professor from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, commented on China’s infrastructure development and the BRI from the perspective of an economist. In the opinion of the professor, the Chinese economic development experience demonstrates the importance of infrastructure.
“In China, interconnectivity facilitates trade and directs investment in the country, and helps to create a large single market,” said Lau. “The first step [of the BRI] is also the building of basic interconnected infrastructure.”
The long-term success of the BRI critically depends on the durability, ease of maintenance, safety and environmental friendliness of the basic infrastructure built, according to Lau, who further stated that “strict quality control is therefore absolutely indispensable.”