The seventh meeting of prime ministers of the People’s Republic of China and 16 countries of Central and Eastern Europe, also known as 16 + 1, will be held in the capital city of Bulgaria on July 6 and 7. The meeting is taking place a bit earlier than the usual, autumn period, as it was the case in the past years.
Confirmation of great results from the last year’s meeting in Budapest is expected in Sofia, as well as official formalization of new projects and established vision that are mutually created by Beijing and sixteen capital cities of the Central and Eastern Europe.
At the last year’s meeting in Budapest, the delegation of BiH was led by the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of BiH, Denis Zvizdic, Minister of Foreign Affairs of BiH, Igor Crnadak, and Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers of BiH, Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations and National Coordinator for 16 + 1, Mirko Sarovic. On that meeting was agreed the construction of thermal, hydro and wind power plants, motorways and railways. Furthermore, based on the guidelines received from Budapest, they agreed on the opening of various scientific and cultural institutions, organization of conferences and forums within the 16 + 1 framework in the fields of agriculture and innovations. All signed bilateral agreements and projects are worth about 4 billion BAM.
The period between the two 16 + 1 meetings was more than successful for our country. The two states abolished visas for the citizens of China and BiH. The agreement on the abolition of visa regime was signed in Budapest, and the bilateral agreement was officially signed by foreign ministers of China and BiH, Wang Yi and Igor Crnadak, while Prime Minister Li Keqian and Denis Zvizdic attended that solemn event as well.
Besides the visa-free regime, we should also mention the Agreement on Agricultural Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH and the Ministry of Agriculture of the People’s Republic of China. This agreement was signed in Budapest by the Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers of BiH and Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH, Mirko Sarovic, and Minister of Trade of PR China, Zhong Shan. The process of intensive communication between our country and institutions of China was opened after concluding this agreement, as well as the business of the community in the field of agriculture and rural development in both countries, together with the promotion of economic, scientific and technological cooperation in these fields.
Besides existing projects whose implementation is currently taking place, including the construction of Block 7 of the Thermal Power Plant in Tuzla, the construction of TPP Banovici, and the construction of several hydro and wind power plants, railways and motorways, BiH can also hope for deeper cooperation in the fields of science, education and sports, organization of special conferences within the 16 + 1 framework, further cooperation within the Mostar Fair, etc.