Alsayed Mahmoud Al-Sharif, the First Deputy Speaker of Egypt’s House of Representatives, meticulously wrote down his mobile phone number and gave it to the CEO of a company based in Urumqi, the capital city of northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
“Please remember to contact me,” said Al-Sharif.
Al-Sharif is not the only one astonished by the fully automated operation of the private company focusing on plastic foil production.
Around 200 representatives of 50 political parties from nearly 30 countries attended a meeting held here on Wednesday aiming to showcase China’s ethnic policy in Xinjiang.
Before the meeting, through visiting the grand bazaar downtown, an Islamic institute, mosques, neighbourhood committees, and enterprises under the Belt and Road Initiative, they were able to observe the landlocked region more directly.
Their arrival at an activity building of the residential community named Guyuanxiang coincided with enthusiastic dancing and singing by local residents, including Uygur and Han people. While one floor up, four Uygurs and two Hans were seriously discussing how to better landscape the community in the spring.
“I can tell how happy and comfortable they are from their smiling faces and hopeful expressions,” said Marwan Sudah from Jordan.
He said that people and media making false and biased remarks concerning China’s governance of Xinjiang should face objective facts.
Chandra Prakash Mainali, chief of the Communist Party of Nepal (Marxist-Leninist), also said he was impressed by the different ethnic people’s hospitality and friendship, stressing this has exceeded his expectations and imagination.
Saying he believes substantial improvement of people’s livelihood correlates with harmonious coexistence of different ethnic groups, Peruvian Communist Party member Luis Alberto Villanueva Carbajal added, “it is not easy for China, a vast country with complex situations, to achieve both.”
Last year, the per capita disposable income of Xinjiang’s rural and urban residents increased by 8.4 percent and 6.5 percent respectively.
During the meeting, Chen Quanguo, Communist Party of China (CPC) chief of Xinjiang, said various ethnic groups of Xinjiang and others around China had fostered a community with a shared future.
Since the 18th CPC National Congress, the CPC Central Committee with Xi Jinping at the core has attached great importance to Xinjiang.
Chen said Xinjiang comprehensively implements the CPC Central Committee’s ethnic policy, firmly upholds ethnic unity, and completely respects and protects freedom of religious belief of the people of all ethnic groups.
Emphasising the importance of promoting high-quality development and improving people’s livelihood, Chen promised to fully implement the CPC Central Committee’s strategy of governing Xinjiang, and strive to build a united, harmonious, prosperous, culturally advanced and secure Xinjiang.
Song Tao, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee, said it is a common task for governments and political parties from across the globe to properly handle ethnic relations and facilitate national unity.
Ethnic unity is the lifeline of people of all ethnic groups, the fundamental cornerstone for Xinjiang’s development and progress, and the common will of over 1.3 billion Chinese people, Xi said.
“As a Muslim, I am pleased to see Muslims here worshipping inside tidy mosques and Islamic institutes,” said Aizaz Asif from Pakistan.
Respect to ethnic diversity and commitment to protecting ethnic tradition is the reason behind China’s successful ethnic policy, he added.
Three people shared their stories at the meeting, one Uygur public servant from southern Xinjiang, one official from south China’s Guangdong province who came to Xinjiang to assist with economic development and one local entrepreneur who has employed people from various ethnic groups.
Hosting 150 million tourists last year, up 40 percent from 2017, Xinjiang has witnessed enhanced security, stability and openness.
Those skyscrapers and innovation enterprises demonstrate the CPC’s balanced consideration of developing both coastal and inland areas, said Markovic Predrag from the Socialist Party of Serbia.
The Belt and Road Initiative has allowed Xinjiang to tap its potential and better connect with the international community, Predrag added.
The Chinese president once said that all ethnic groups in China should hold together like pomegranate seeds to achieve the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.
Aleksei Leskin, Central Committee member of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, agrees with this metaphor.
“Only through unity and solidarity can we become stronger,” Leskin said.