Promoters pose at the first China-South Asia Expo in Kunming, capital of southwest China's Yunnan Province, June 6, 2013. The five-day China-South Asia Expo opened here on Thursday, attracting over 1,400 exhibitors from Asian countries and regions. (Xinhua/Chen Haining)
KUNMING -- The first China-South Asia Expo, aimed at boosting cooperation and development of the region, kicked off Thursday in Kunming, capital of southwest China's Yunnan Province.
With the theme of opening up to each other, pragmatic cooperation, mutual benefit and harmonious development, the expo is expected to serve as a platform for economic, technological and cultural exchanges between China and South Asian countries.
The five-day expo is expected to attract more than 1,200 exhibitors and buyers from 43 countries or regions, according to organizers.
There are 2,420 indoor exhibitor booths which are divided into four display areas, including a mechanical and electrical equipment zone and a biological resources section. There are also two outdoor display zones for furniture, large machinery and equipment.
South Asian countries are registered to take up 748 booths, accounting for about one third of the total.
Chinese Vice Premier Ma Kai and foreign leaders or senior officials from Malawi, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia and Thailand attended the opening ceremony. The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation Secretary-General Ahmed Saleem was also present.
The event has been upgraded from the South Asian Countries Commodities Fair which was first held in Kunming in 2010.
The 21st Kunming Import and Export Fair opened simultaneously with the expo.