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  • Europe – Asia Center Hosting the Inaugural Session of the Europe-Asia Integration and Connectivity Symposium

    Brussels, May 24th, 2024 On Saturday, 11th of May, the Europe-Asia Center, in collaboration with Pangoal Institute, hosted the inaugural session of the landmark Europe-Asia Integration and Connectivity Symposium, held in Beijing, China. In the first part of the symposium, distinguished thought leaders, policymakers, and artists gathered for dynamic panel discussions and delivered illuminating keynote addresses on the topics of arts, education, and women's empowerment. Among the esteemed speakers were H.E. Erik Solheim, Co-chair of the Europe-Asia Center and former UN Undersecretary-General; H.E. Jean de Ruyt, Co-chair of the Europe-Asia Center and former Belgian Ambassador to the EU and UN; H.E. Irina Bokova, former Director General of UNESCO; Madame Sheila Arora, Vice-Chair of the Europe-Asia Center, Professor Wei Shen, Vice-Chair of the Europe-Asia Center, and Yan Rui, Secretary General of the Europe-Asia Center. Additionally, the summit welcomed prominent guests including Yi Peng, Chairman of the Pangoal Institute; H.E. Xia Hua, Deputy to the National People's Congress; H.E. Zhang Gu, former Deputy Secretary-General of the Sichuan Provincial Government; Li Guanru, founder of L3 Branding; Wang Weiqi, bestselling science fiction author; and Wang Yue, Secretary General of the Pangoal Institute, who all enriched the discourse with their invaluable insights. In their discussions, the panellists emphasized the critical role of arts and education in bridging Europe and Asia, and underscored the need for increased funding and collaboration on joint projects in these areas. Notably, Madame Bokova highlighted the importance of promoting STEAM education—science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics. In the afternoon, the symposium focused on international development strategies for Chinese enterprises. The discussions, featuring high-caliber guest speakers such as H.E. Bruno Angelet, Belgian Ambassador to China; H.E. Zhu Rui, former Assistant Minister of the International Liaison Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China; and Christiane Prange, Visiting Professor at Zhejiang University School of Business, were both insightful and highly relevant. Distinguished board members of the Europe-Asia Center and Pangoal Institute further enriched the dialogue. Chinese businesses demonstrated significant interest in the symposium, with notable attendees including Zhao Hejuan, founder of TMT Post; Mei Xiangrong, Global Partner at Yingke Law Firm; Mao Daqing, founder of Ucommune; Fu Sheng, chairman of Cheetah Mobile; Bai Yunfeng, chairman of the State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation; and Zhou Xicheng, chairman of Langjing Environmental Technology Ltd. Companies shared best practices in their internationalization strategies and discussed lessons learned. Mr. Solheim emphasized the crucial role of business in not only fostering closer ties between Europe and Asia but also promoting the green transition and achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A particular highlight was a virtual presentation by Lisa Lang, Director of Policy at Climate-KIC, on the EU's green legislation. This provided Chinese entrepreneurs with essential insights for entering the European market. Mr. Matic Gajsek, Director for Europe at the Europe-Asia Center, showed great satisfaction at the outcomes of the symposium, noting: "Seeing the outcome of this symposium has made me incredibly happy. I am looking forward to making this an annual event and expanding it even further next year, reaching wider parts of East Asia. I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to all the guests and panellists who made this event such a success." For press enquiries: Jonathan Schwestka, Project Coordinator, Europe – Asia Center E-mail:

  • Europe – Asia Center: High-Level Visit of the China Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries

    Brussels, May 22nd, 2024 On Friday, 10th of May, a high-level delegation from the Europe-Asia Center, led by its two Co-Chairs, the former UN Undersecretary General H.E. Erik Solheim and former Ambassador to the UN H.E. Jean de Ruyt, and including former UNESCO Director General H.E. Irina Bokova, Vice-Chair Sheila Arora, Vice-Chair Wei Shen, Secretary-General Rui Yan, and Programme Coordinator Jonathan Schwestka, visited the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFCC), one of the major foreign affairs organizations of the People's Republic of China. The meeting was held in an idyllic venue in the heart of Beijing, providing a perfect backdrop for the day's events. Amidst a convivial atmosphere, both parties engaged in candid discussions concerning the present state of EU-China relations, thoroughly examining challenges and exploring pathways for positive change. Emphasizing the importance of avoiding the securitization of trade and investment, they reaffirmed their commitment to cooperation aimed at nurturing mutual understanding and trust between China and Europe. The exchange of ideas and perspectives was frank and honest, and underscored the mutual desire to build stronger ties, as well as highlighted the potential for collaborative efforts in addressing global challenges. Both the Europe-Asia Center and CPAFCC recognized the value of such high-level exchanges in fostering long-term, positive relationships between the two regions. At the end of the meeting, Jonathan Schwestka, Project Coordinator at the Europe-Asia Center, noted: "Engaging in these dialogues and keeping open channels of communication is akin to tending a garden; it requires consistent effort and care, but the results are worth it. By exploring strategies for positive change together, we can cultivate a landscape of mutual respect and understanding, ensuring a fruitful future for both Europe and China." For press enquiries: Jonathan Schwestka, Project Coordinator, Europe – Asia Center E-mail:

  • Europe – Asia Center: High-Level Participation at the Global Prosperity Summit in Hong Kong

    Brussels, May 22nd, 2024 On the 14th of May, a high-level delegation from the Europe-Asia Center, led by Co-Chair H.E. Jean de Ruyt, former Ambassador to the UN, and H.E. Irina Bokova, former Director General of UNESCO, participated in the inaugural session of the Global Prosperity Summit held in Hong Kong. Organized by a group of business, academic and thought leaders, including the Savantas Policy Institute and the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies, the Summit provided a platform for honest, objective and rational discussions of dominant issues impacting global prosperity. During the summit, Ambassador de Ruyt took part in the panel on "Great Power Competition and Peaceful Co-Existence." He was joined by distinguished panelists, including Professor Cheng Li, founding director of the Centre on Contemporary China and the World at the University of Hong Kong; Mr. Hashim Djojohadikusumo, chairman of ARSARI Group of Companies; Ms. Susan A. Thornton, Senior Fellow at the Yale Law School; and Professor Yang Jiemian, Chairman of the Academic Advisory Council of the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SHS). Showcasing viewpoints from China, the U.S., Europe, and the ASEAN region, the panel provided a microcosm of perspectives on contemporary international relations. Meanwhile, H.E. Irina Bokova participated in the panel on "Climate Change and Sustainable Development," where she underscored the necessity of multilateral, UN-centered cooperation, and reminded the audience of the "5 Ps": People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, Partnership. She was joined by Mr. T.K. Chiang, CEO of CLP Holdings Limited; Mr. Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges, CEO of the Hong Kong Jockey Club; and Professor Ye Qi, Professor at the School of Public Policy and Management, Tsinghua University. United in their commitment to addressing climate change and realizing the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the panelists shared a range of innovative approaches from both the public and private sectors, emphasizing the crucial need for close collaboration among all stakeholders to effectively tackle these global challenges. Matic Gajsek, Director for Europe at the Europe-Asia Center, applauded the organization of the summit and expressed strong support for ongoing and future cooperation. "The Global Prosperity Summit has been an excellent platform for fostering dialogue and building partnerships. We look forward to contributing to next year's summit and continuing our collaboration with such esteemed organizations," he said. For press enquiries: Jonathan Schwestka, Project Coordinator, Europe – Asia Center E-mail:

  • Europe – Asia Center supporting the YuYuan Group launch of the flagship 'Guide to Local Delights' in Shanghai

    Brussels - Shanghai, May 19th, 2024 On May 19th, in celebration of China National Tourism Day, YuYuan Group officially released "A Guide to Local Delights" of Shanghai. This guide aims to help inbound tourists deeply experience Shanghai's unique cultural charm and lifestyle aesthetics. The Guide was designed by the YuYuan’s Group Institute for Oriental Lifestyle Aesthetics Research, in collaboration with the European Institute for Comparative Urban Research (EURICUR), the Europe-Asia Center, and other institutions under the Oriental Lifestyle Aesthetics Ecological Alliance. It highlights 140 distinctive cultural, commercial, and tourist spots in central Shanghai through hand-drawn illustrations. The Guide offers a comprehensive experience with its multifunctional approach, combining navigation, guidance, shopping, and promotion, thereby vividly showcasing Shanghai's vibrant cultural atmosphere, fashion sense, and international flair. The guide’s objective is to establish Shanghai as the premier destination for inbound tourism in China and a world-renowned tourist city. Junjie Hu, Vice President, Spokesperson, and Director of the Institute for Oriental Lifestyle Aesthetics Research at YUYUAN Inc., emphasized that Shanghai is not only China's economic center but also a globally renowned tourist destination and a convergence point of Eastern and Western cultures. Inbound tourism serves as a vital window for Shanghai to present its city image to the world. As a global family-oriented consumption industry group based in Shanghai, YUYUAN Inc. is committed to enhancing the quality of its products and services and optimizing the consumption environment for inbound tourists. This commitment aims to meet the increasingly diverse demands of the inbound tourism market, providing international tourists with a richer and more enjoyable travel and shopping experience. Furthermore, YUYUAN Inc. has prioritized Oriental lifestyle aesthetics in its strategy, refining the cultural attributes of its brands and products in ways that resonate with overseas consumers. The company also seeks to promote its high-quality projects and brands internationally, showcasing Chinese culture and Oriental lifestyle aesthetics to attract more overseas visitors to China and Shanghai. The Guide is divided into four chapters: ‘Shanghai Must’, ‘Shanghai Speed’, ‘Local Shanghai’, and ‘Exploring Hidden Gems’, gradually unfolding Shanghai's story to the world. The 140 carefully selected experience points guide international visitors through four interactive actions—Navigating, Embracing, Sampling, and Exploring (N, E, S, E)—allowing them to engage with the oriental lifestyle aesthetics through all senses: sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch. The selection of sites is based on the essence of Oriental culture and Shanghai's unique charm, incorporating high-frequency recommendations from international travel platforms, trending spots on social media, and official suggestions from the Shanghai Municipal Administration of Culture and Tourism. These are the must-see spots that appeal to travelers worldwide, including Shanghai Classical Restaurant and Lu Bo Lang for authentic local cuisine, the Royal Workshop of Chinese Brush and Ink and Tong Han Chun Tang for intangible cultural heritage experiences, and revitalized historic cultural districts like Julu Road, Sinan Road, and Xintiandi. The Guide also features the South Bund Textile Market and the Shang Gang Farmer’s Market, which blend the urban atmosphere with local life. The Guide's hand-drawn style, using delicate strokes and rich colors, vividly showcases Shanghai's oriental charm and lifestyle aesthetics, enhancing its visual appeal and helping tourists appreciate the city's unique allure. To provide more convenient and practical services for inbound tourists, the Guide is available in both Chinese and English. It integrates traditional offline paper manuals with online platforms, with integration offering tourists convenience in transportation, payment, and other aspects. Tourists can purchase integrated day, three-day, and seven-day passes by scanning QR codes on the Guide, allowing seamless access to all modes of transportation in the city. The Guide also partners with the "Leyou Yuyuan" mini-program to launch a special "Shanghai Old City Tour," providing information on various commercial activities in the Yu Garden area and exclusive promotions. To further support inbound tourism and attract more overseas consumers to China, YuYuan Group has accelerated its efforts to promote Chinese culture and Shanghai-style culture globally. From late 2023 to early 2024, the Yuyuan Lantern Festival, a renowned national intangible cultural heritage project, was held in Paris, France, for the first time, receiving praise from local French consumers. This event sparked interest in China and Chinese culture, encouraging French citizens to visit China and experience the Yuyuan Lantern Festival in Shanghai. This approach aims to attract more overseas visitors to China, offering them a deeper understanding of the country. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Europe – Asia Center hosting the Xi'an Municipal Tourism and Investment promotion event in Oslo, Norway

    Brussels, May 14th, 2024 On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the Diplomatic relationship between Norway and China, Europe – Asia Center was delighted to host a senior delegation of the Xi’an Municipal Government led by Executive Deputy Mayon Mr Lyu Laisheng to Norway. As part of the high-level visit and exchanges, Europe – Asia Center hosted a Tourism and Investment promotion event titled “Xi’an: A Thousand Years, Endless Returns” on May 8th. Co-hosted by the Xi’an Municipal Government, XiXian New Development Area and the Europe – Asia Center, the event gathered over 30 Norwegian business leaders working on the Sino – Norwegian economic exchanges. Event featured keynote address by Executive Deputy Mayor of Xi’an Mr Lvu Laisheng, H.E. Ambassador Svein Ole Sæther, former Norwegian Ambassador to China (2007 – 2017). Presenting the investment and cooperation opportunities for Norwegian businesses and entrepreneurs in Xi’an were Mr Guo Xiaohui, Deputy Director of the Xi'an Investment and Merchants Bureau and Zhang Wei, a member of the Party Working Committee and Deputy Director of the Administrative Committee of the Xixian New Area. Special reflection on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the diplomatic relationships were made by Mr Matic Gajsek, on behalf of the co-chair of Europe – Asia Center H.E. Erik Solheim, Mr Lars Almklov, Vice President and Director of Government and Public Affairs of DNV as one of Norway’s longest present businesses in Mainland China, and Ms Cao Sonja, member of the board of the Norwegian China Friendship Association, who shared more insights on the rich Sino-Norwegian people-to-people exchange projects. Their contributions offered an inspiring prospect on the future of socio-economic exchanges between Xi'an and Norway. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Europe - Asia Center: High-Level Exchange with H.E. Bruno Angelet, Belgian Ambassador to China

    Brussels - Beijing, May 10th, 2024 On May 10, 2024, a momentous gathering took place as a delegation from the Europe - Asia Center, led by Co-Chair H.E. Jean de Ruyt, former Ambassador of Belgium to the UN, vice-chair Mrs Sheila Arora and H.E. Madame Irina Bokova, former Director-General of UNESCO, engaged in a strategic dialogue with Belgian Ambassador to China H.E. Bruno Angelet. This rendezvous signified a significant stride towards deepening understanding and collaboration between key players in the EU and China. Throughout their discourse, they navigated the intricate landscape of EU-China relations, addressing both the pressing challenges and the abundant prospects that lie ahead. A key takeaway from their exchange was the imperative of proactive engagement to catalyze positive developments. From economic partnerships and cultural exchanges to environmental sustainability endeavours, they collectively explored diverse avenues for collaboration aimed at nurturing resilient and mutually beneficial ties. Moreover, amidst the backdrop of global uncertainties and evolving geopolitical dynamics, there was a resolute commitment to fortifying the resilience of EU-China relations. This entailed not only confronting immediate challenges but also laying the groundwork for a partnership that is adaptive and responsive to future exigencies. Looking forward, there is a shared aspiration for heightened collaboration and synergy between the Europe-Asia Center and Belgium, as well as broader EU-China initiatives. In the words of H.E. Jean de Ruyt, Co-Chair of the Europe - Asia Center, "The Belgian EU Presidency serves as a vital catalyst for injecting fresh energy into EU foreign relations." For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Europe – Asia Center: H.E. Violeta Bulc on Mobility as driver of Social cohesion (The Mobility Sphere)

    Brussels, April 19th, 2024 At the second edition of the Mobility Sphere conference organized by Transdev, held on April 18th in Brussels under the theme “Mobility as a driver of social cohesion,” H.E. Madame Violeta Bulc, Vice-Chair of the Europe-Asia Center, delivered a captivating keynote address, urging attendees to confront the pressing issue of growing disparities within and across EU Member States. Drawing from her extensive experience as the former EU Commissioner of Transport, Madame Bulc emphasized the imperative of innovative measures to bridge the social divide between urban and rural areas. She underscored the importance of bringing transportation infrastructure back to rural regions, highlighting citizen dialogues as powerful tools for fostering democratic participation and community ownership. In a bold departure from conventional approaches, Madame Bulc challenged the contemporary reliance on cutting-edge technological solutions, advocating instead for affordable and inclusive strategies. Additionally, she stressed the necessity of supranational and global cooperation to address complex challenges, including those related to Space. Closing her address, Madame Bulc emphasized the virtues of resilience, adaptability, and flexibility in navigating today's unpredictable landscape. "The more we plan, the less we predict," she astutely observed. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Europe – Asia Center: The XI. Baku Global Forum, Azerbaijan

    Brussels, March 20th, 2024 Between March 14th – 16th 2024, H.E. Madame Irina Bokova, former UNESCO Director General and close collaborator of the Europe-Asia Center and director for Europe, Mr. Matic Gajsek attended the XI. Baku Global Forum. The flagship event hosted by the Nizami Ganjavi International Center was themed “Fixing the Fractured World”. Summit serves as a crucial platform for fostering international cooperation and understanding amidst an increasingly “fractured” international landscape. The Global Baku Forum has emerged as a significant event for addressing pressing global challenges and proposing innovative solutions. Baku, strategically located at the crossroads of Eastern Europe and Western Asia, provides a symbolic setting, reflecting Azerbaijan’s role as a bridge between diverse cultures and regions. Matic Gajsek, Director for Europe at the Europe-Asia Center, highlighted the forum’s importance, stating, “The Global Baku Forum offers a unique opportunity for global leaders and stakeholders to come together and engage in some of the most pressing issues of our time. It was great to take part in the numerous high-level dialogues that were a true display of collaborative efforts and dialogue, essential in tackling global challenges effectively. We would like to thank the Nizami Ganjavi International Center for creating such a significant platform of dialogue, to which we as a center hope to contribute in the future.” During the forum, the delegation of the Europe-Asia Center engaged in meaningful discussions on various topics, including education, climate emergency and just-transition, peace, security and intercultural dialogue. Notably, H.E. Madame Irina Bokova, former Director-General of UNESCO and Patron of the International Science Council, contributed insights on climate justice in a high-level panel discussion, sharing innovative ideas to address the climate funding gap and achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals. As we navigate the complexities of our world, the Europe-Asia Center remains dedicated to promoting dialogue, understanding, and cooperation between Europe and Asia. In this regard, the contributions of Europe – Asia Center at the Global Baku Forum reflect a comprehensive and inclusive approach to global issues, with the aim of forging a more interconnected and prosperous future for all. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Europe – Asia Center: Announcement of strategic partnership with Pangoal Think-Tank

    Brussels, March 18th, 2024 In a landmark development, the Europe-Asia Center and Pangoal, one of China’s leading think-tanks, have officially announced a strategic partnership aimed at fostering closer collaboration between the European and Asian communities. The partnership agreement was formalized at a ceremony in Beijing, marking the beginning of an exciting journey towards enhanced cooperation and mutual growth. With a shared vision of bolstering relationships between Europe and Asia, the partnership between the Europe-Asia Center and Pangoal seeks to facilitate deeper understanding and engagement across various sectors. Through this collaboration, both entities aspire to empower Asian businesses with comprehensive insights into the European market while assisting European enterprises in navigating the complexities of the Chinese market landscape. “We are delighted to embark on this transformative partnership with Pangoal,” remarked Erik Solheim, Co-Chair at the Europe-Asia Center and signatory of the strategic partnership. “Our joint efforts will not only promote economic exchange but also facilitate dialogues on critical political issues, fostering mutual understanding and cooperation between our regions.” Pangoal, under the leadership of Yi Peng, is recognized as a leading Beijing-based think tank renowned for its comprehensive research and initiatives addressing key global challenges. With a focus on areas such as green development, artificial intelligence, ageing society, and conflict resolution, Pangoal’s expertise is poised to enrich the partnership’s scope and impact. The partnership between the Europe-Asia Center and Pangoal signifies a commitment to fostering inclusive dialogue and collaboration between Europe and Asia. By leveraging their respective strengths and networks, both organizations aim to inspire connections across cultural, artistic, sporting, historical, and heritage domains, enriching the fabric of intercontinental relations. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Europe – Asia Center: H.E. Erik Solheim in high-level dialogue with China’s Special Envoy for Climate Change, H.E. Ambassador Liu Zhenmin

    Brussels, March 15th, 2024 His Excellency Erik Solheim, Co-Chair of the Europe-Asia Center, engaged in fruitful discussions with His Excellency Ambassador Liu Zhenmin, China’s newly appointed Special Envoy for Climate Change, during his recent visit to China, marking a significant moment in international climate diplomacy. The meeting, held in Beijing, provided a platform to address pressing climate-related issues and to foster dialogue on the future of EU-China climate cooperation. Mr. Solheim extended warm congratulations to his long-time colleague Mr. Liu on his new role, expressing confidence in China’s climate diplomacy under his leadership. Shared concerns regarding the pace of progress towards fulfilling the Paris Agreement were discussed, with both parties reaffirming their commitment to achieving tangible results in line with the Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Discussions spanned a range of topics, including the climate roadmap towards the upcoming Baku conference, China’s leadership in green energy, and the transformative potential of hydropower and hydrogen in conjunction with solar and wind energy solutions. Mr. Solheim’s steadfast advocacy for multi-stakeholder engagement and the strong involvement of the private sector and civil society in the global struggle against climate change was not only discussed but demonstrated in practice, with the active participation of Europe – Asia Center’s Secretary General Rui Yan and delegations from the International Hydropower Association and Green Hydrogen Organization. The high-level dialogue underscores the paramount importance of nurturing diplomatic and societal ties between the EU and China, reflecting a shared commitment to fostering resilient and mutually beneficial partnerships – in the field of climate change and beyond. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Press release: Advancing Global Sustainable Development through promoting the values of Human Fraternity

    Abu Dhabi -Brussels – 14th February 2024 On February 4th and 5th 2024, Europe-Asia Center hosted the landmark 2024 Summit on “Human Fraternity as a Catalyst for Global Sustainable Development,” held in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Building upon the legacy of the esteemed Zayed Award for Human Fraternity, the summit convened on the UN International Day of Human Fraternity, underscoring the pivotal role of interconnected faith dynamics in driving sustainable progress worldwide. Distinguished thought leaders, policymakers, and activists convened to engage in dynamic panel discussions and deliver illuminating keynote addresses. Among the esteemed speakers were H.E. Erik Solheim, Co-chair of the Europe-Asia Center and former UN Deputy Secretary-General, H.E. Violeta Bulc, Vice-Chair of the Europe-Asia Center and former EU Commissioner for Transport and Mobility, and Venerable Master Jijing, leader of faith and Cultural consultant of the Europe – Asia Center. In addition, the summit welcomed esteemed guests including H.E. Madame Irina Bokova, former UNESCO Director-General, Ms. Shamsa Abubakar Fadhil (“Shamsa Mama”), peace mediator, community mobilizer and 2023 Lauret of the Zayed Award for Human Fraternity, H.E. Judge Mohamed Abdelsalam, General Secretary of Muslim Elders, and Honourable Nirmal Sethia, renowned businessman and philanthropist, who enriched the discourse with their invaluable insights. Under the moderation of Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe at the Europe-Asia Center, and prof. Shen Wei, Vice-Chair of the Europe-Asia Center, discussions centered on the imperative of cross-cultural dialogue in fostering sustainable development on a global scale. Panellists reflected on the transcendental values that may serve as the foundation for constructive collaboration in an increasingly interconnected world, and emphasized the urgent need for increased collaborative efforts to unite diverse peoples, societies, and nations, and cultivate a sense of universal brotherhood. Delving into the symbiotic relationship between faith traditions and sustainable development goals, panellists championed innovative approaches to address contemporary challenges. From ethical frameworks for environmental conservation to strategies for poverty eradication, inclusive societal growth, and climate action, the summit challenged conventional paradigms, advocating for holistic solutions rooted in faith, empathy and understanding. Participants also offered actionable insights on fostering business cooperation to combat climate change, reflecting the summit’s commitment to driving real-world impact. Inspired by the principles of the Human Fraternity document for ‘World Peace and Living Together’, participants cultivated a “friendly and fraternal atmosphere where [they] shared the joys, sorrows and problems of our contemporary world”, reflecting on actionable pathways towards “thriving together”, core ethos of the Europe-Asia Center. About the Europe-Asia Center The Europe-Asia Center is an independent, not-for-profit organization promoting Asia-Europe relations by connecting professionals, institutions, organizations and networks across all sectors. Through implementation of projects, including conferences, workshops, cultural events, publications, educational and research programs, the mission of the Europe- Asia Center is to connect people and knowledge across continents. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

  • Europe – Asia Center: High-level dialogue on EU-Vietnam relations with Ambassador Nguyen Van Thao

    Brussels, January 30th, 2024 On the occasion of the Lunar New Year – Tet Celebration, Her Excellency Dr. hc. Madame Violeta Bulc, Vice-Chair of the Europe-Asia Center, along with Mr. Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe of the Europe-Asia Center, engaged in a high-level dialogue with His Excellency Nguyen Van Thao, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam in the Kingdom of Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, Mission of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam to the European Union, to discuss the current state and prospects of EU-Vietnam relations. During a recent exchange, Ambassador Nguyen Van Thao shared the previous exchanges between the Vietnamese embassy and the Europe – Asia Center, under the leadership of Ambassador (ret.) Piet Steel. Madame Bulc reaffirmed the center’s commitment to foster dialogue and exchanges across sectors between Europe and Vietnam. Ambassador Nguyen Van Thao underscored the importance of EU – Vietnam dialogue and exchanges, specifically in area of promotion of the international cooperation in climate change and green transition. Specifically interest of Vietnam for promoting closer cooperation in area of high-tech investment, green hydrogen export and added value production. Areas which Vietnam can play a vital role in supporting the climate ambitions by the EU. Ambassador furthermore emphasized the importance of strengthening the cultural exchanges and activities that would promote greater exchanges. Madame Bulc reflected on her past experiences of collaboration with Vietnam and the ASEAN region during her tenure as the EU Commissioner for Transport and Mobility. She emphasized the need for promoting stronger exchanges and collaboration, two areas where the Europe – Asia Center can contribute to the work of the respected diplomatic mission. Both parties shared the mutual commitment to strengthening the relationship between the Vietnamese diplomatic mission and the Europe – Asia Center. For press enquiries: Matic Gajšek, Director for Europe, Europe – Asia Center E-mail: m.gajsek(at)

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