Tourism, culture and trade topped the agenda of talks between Crete Governor Stavros Arnaoutakis and his Chinese counterpart from the region of Guangxi, Chen Wu, who signed a treaty of friendship and cooperation last week.
Autonomous since 1958, the Guangxi region bordering Vietnam, is divided into 14 prefecture-level divisions and has a population of some 55 million.
“It takes effort, patience and perseverance in order to bring the island closer to the Chinese and I believe that in the coming years we will see great development in tourism and the export of olive oil,” Mr Arnaoutakis said, adding that he wishes to see the partnership between the Chinese region and Crete produce results.
Mr Arnaoutakis was quick to point out that there have been several attempts in the past to reach out to the Chinese authorities but these have failed to lead to protocols of cooperation which will provide hands-on results.
“Today we have signed with Mr Arnaoutakis a pact for friendship and cooperation. We are interested in tourism and the result can be very positive for the island, which is very dear to China. We thank the Region of Crete for hosting us and I want to point out that we are well aware of the quality of Cretan olive oil,” said Mr Wu, expressing his admiration of Cretan culture, history and cuisine.