The ten-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China are celebrating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of their relations. Thanks to the China-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), more commodities from ASEAN countries have entered the Chinese market. In 2020, China and ASEAN became each other's largest trading partners for the first time.
Since the relations began in July 1991, bilateral trade volume had soared from less than 8 billion U.S. dollars to more than 680 billion dollars last year. With such a strong foundation, the two sides have pledged to enhance cooperation in all sectors to open a new chapter in ASEAN-China common development and prosperity.
The Thai-Chinese Rayong Industrial Zone in Thailand's Rayong Province has been a miniature and fruit of such win-win cooperation. Established in 2006 and now home to 160 overseas companies, the plant boasts 40,000 local workers, mostly in automobile, electronics and machinery sectors.
With more than 650 million consumers and being a supply chain hub for major industries, ASEAN is becoming an important strategic market for Chinese businesses.