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The prominence of the participants and the sheer scale of this year's Boao Forum for Asia make it unprecedented. Running from Saturday to Monday in Boao, a coastal town in China's southern island province of Hainan, the BFA is poised to assume a greater role as an international platform for discussing important regional and global issues.
With the theme of "Asia seeking development for all: Restructuring, Responsibility and Cooperation", the forum has broadened its agenda this year to not only focus on Asia, but also include issues from other regions such as Africa, Latin America and Europe. It epitomizes China's vision in promoting cooperation among Asian countries and enhancing interaction with other regions of the world.
The steady growth of the BFA shows China, as an emerging economy, is willing to contribute more to resolving the burning issues the world is facing today. This was also the message of President Xi Jinping in his address to the BFA on Sunday.
Xi urged countries to foster a "sense of community of common destiny", stick together in times of difficulties and ensure that the developments of Asia and the rest of the world reach new highs.
He pledged that China would ensure that its development brings even greater benefits to its neighbors, underscoring China's commitment to seeking win-win cooperation with Asian countries and its interest in forging partnerships in the broader context.
Xi said that "none of us can live without peace", which he likened to air and sunshine. He called on Asian countries to enhance mutual trust and understanding, deepen cooperation and work together to ensure durable peace and stability in the region.
Xi's remarks should drive home the message that China will continue to play an active role in driving regional development as well as safeguarding peace and stability in the region.
The main reason that Asia has emerged as an important engine driving the global economic recovery and growth while instilling much needed confidence in the world is that it has maintained peace and stability in recent years.
Countries in the region should cherish this desirable picture when they respond to new challenges and pressing issues in the region. It is important that they should resolve their differences through dialogue and negotiations in the larger interest of the sound growth of their relations as well as economies.