BARCELONA, Spain, Nov. 17 (Xinhua) -- The annual Global China Business Meeting opened here Monday to discuss how Chinese companies can help ward off a global recession amidst the current international financial crisis.
Speaking at the meeting's opening ceremony, Spanish Minister of Industry Miguel Sebastian praised China's role in stabilizing the world economy amidst the crisis.
The minister said "China has become one of the major driving forces of the global economy."
While many western nations have fallen into recession, China's economy continues to grow rapidly and steadily, demonstrating its increasingly important role in the world economy, the minister said.
He stressed the importance for Spain to develop a comprehensive partnership of strategic cooperation with China and expressed belief that bilateral economic relations would continue to grow in the future because of win-win cooperation between the two countries.
Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said China's recent performance in dealing with the international financial crisis had shown that it was fulfilling its duties as an important global power.
The foreign minister said that Spain was willing to carry out all-round comprehensive cooperation with China and would join hands to cope with the financial crisis.
In an effort to expand domestic demand and speed up construction of public facilities, the Chinese government announced an economic stimulus package estimated at 4 trillion RMB (570 billion U.S. dollars) on Nov. 9. The funds will be spent over the next two years on 10 major areas, including low-income housing, rural infrastructure, water, electricity, transportation, the environment and technological innovation.
Xu Kuangdi, chairman of the China Federation of Industrial Economics, and president of the Chinese Academy of Engineering Science, said China was ready to strengthen cooperation with Spain and join hands in face of the current global challenges.
The three-day meeting, under the theme of "Globalizing Chinese firms," has drawn about 400 business and political leaders worldwide, including Chinese Vice Minister of Commerce Gao Hucheng. It is an important annual gathering of Chinese business leaders and their global counterparts.
Discussion topics for the meeting include the economic outlook for China and the world, China's Olympic momentum, and China's role in global trade. There also will be a specific focus on themes like private equity, merger and acquisitions, branding, natural resources, and efforts to ensure sustainable growth.
A highlight of the meeting will be the announcement of the 2008Chinese Business Leaders of the Year, which will celebrate outstanding entrepreneurs who have been building and leading successful global Chinese firms.
The meeting, in its fourth edition and formerly known as the China-Europe Business Meeting, is held in Spain for the first time. It is co-sponsored by Geneva-based strategic advisory firm Horasis, the China Federation of Industrial Economics, and Casa Asia, an institution under the Spanish government.