City tour gives youth plenty to talk about

Publish: 11:13 AM, October 16, 2023

As part of the Belt and Road Youth English Speaking Competition and the “21st Century Cup” National English-Speaking Competition, a group of international contestants and guests have been given insights into Taicang, a county-level city in East China’s Jiangsu province.

The visit to Taicang on Tuesday and Wednesday gave the visitors the opportunity to savour the city’s achievements, both historical and contemporary.

The first stop on the tour was Taicang Sino-German Cooperation Exhibition Hall, which provided an insight into collaboration between the two countries stretching back 30 years.

At Mubea Automotive Components (Taicang) Co., Ltd. visitors were able to see some of the intricacies of automotive parts production. Mubea Group, a German family-owned company founded in 1916, prides itself on products that help reduce vehicle weight, increase energy efficiency, and are environmentally friendly.

The group also visited OASE Water Art (Taicang) Co., Ltd. a German company and a pioneer in the field of garden water art and fountain technology.

One of the students, Worada Raoruja from Thailand, said she was surprised at the extent of German investment in China, and she was impressed with the strong ties between the two countries.

“The relationship is so deep, and my understanding of it has deepened as well.”

Strahinja Trivkovic from Serbia was enthused about the collaboration between his country and China and attributed it primarily to the Belt and Road Initiative.

“In Serbia, there are many Chinese high-tech companies, including Huawei.”

The speaking competition has given him a great opportunity to visit China for the first time, an experience he has revelled in, he said.

On the second day of the visit, contestants dove deeper into Taicang’s cultural treasures. Their day began at Taicang Museum, where they engaged with local experts and were guided through the museum’s rich collection. They were also able to enjoy a performance featuring the traditional Chinese instrument, the guqin, or Chinese zither.

The next stop was Nanyuan, a garden renowned for its beauty and serenity. A visit to the Shuangfeng Dragon and Lion Exhibition Hall was another of the day’s highlights. There, the visitors participated in dragon and lion dances and lantern rolling.

To conclude the day, students visited Shaxi Ancient Town, which is under the jurisdiction of Taicang. Led by a local expert, they visited places such as the Tang Research Institute and a dental clinic.

Victoria Lee-Baruffolo from France emphasised the importance of Western understanding regarding the historical connection between the BRI and the Ancient Maritime Silk Road.

Such awareness will help people understand that “there is a precedent for what it used to be, and therefore [the government] wants to make a modernised version of it”, she said.

Arman Serikanov from Kazakhstan extolled Taicang’s serenity and its contrast with the hustle and bustle of larger cities.

Source: China Daily