Chinese envoy seeks stronger relations between Fujian, Cebu

THE newly installed consul general of the People’s Republic of China in Cebu has sought a stronger bilateral relations in tourism, trade and investments between Cebu Province and Fujian Province in China.

Consul General Zhang Zen expressed this during her recent meeting with Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia at the Capitol.

While the governor welcomed the idea, she emphasized that this can only be realized once direct flights between Cebu and China could resume as soon as possible, especially now that travel restrictions have since been eased.

Currently, direct connectivity from Cebu to mainland China hasn’t resumed since the pandemic.

The governor believes that direct connectivity is key to further boost the bilateral relations between Cebu and China, especially in the areas of trade, investment, tourism and people-to-people exchanges.

“Everything in this world accessibility is key. The most concrete, I believe, accomplishment would be for both provinces to be able to have direct flights. Because with this, then, tourism will be greatly boosted for both. Trade and investments will also follow,” the governor told the Chinese envoy.

Pre-pandemic times, Cebu had direct flights to a number of major cities in mainland China such as Shanghai, Shenzhen and Xiamen. Currently, these flights have yet to resume.

AirAsia had announced that it would resume its Cebu-Shenzhen direct flights supposedly in June but this hasn’t been realized yet. Sources at the Mactan-Cebu International Airport told SunStar Cebu said the scheduled resumption has been pushed to September.

For her part, the Chinese consul said she is very much willing to continue to promote the cooperation that has already been established between China and Cebu Province.

Garcia cited in particular the assistance and support that the Chinese Government had extended to Cebu during the pandemic and super typhoon Odette.

Cebu Province had already established sisterhood pacts with various provinces in China, particularly Guangdong and Fujian, which are home to many Chinese who are now living in Cebu. (CSL)