by Marian Draganov
SOFIA, Feb. 28 (Xinhua) -- During the last 40 years, China has become a promoter of global stability and prosperity, former Bulgarian Parliament Speaker Mihail Mikov said Tuesday in an interview with Xinhua.
Since the implementation of its policy of reform and opening-up in 1978, "China has done a lot," Mikov said.
Due to its strong economic development and sustainable policy, China has effectively addressed many domestic problems like poverty and food security, and paid special attention to ecological problems by developing renewable energy sources, Mikov said.
"Every time, I am impressed by China's extraordinary progress, including its infrastructure development, and the improvement of citizens' living standard," said Mikov, speaker of Bulgaria's National Assembly from 2013 to 2014, and chairman of the Bulgarian Socialist Party from 2014 to 2016, who has visited China four times.
Meanwhile, China has been playing an increasingly important role in international organizations such as the United Nations (UN), and in particular has been seeking a connection between the economies in Asia and the Eurasian region, as well as Africa and Latin America, Mikov said.
"In this sense, China is a major positive factor for balanced and sustainable international relations," he said.
FOR A SHARED FUTURE
In 2015, at the summits commemorating the 70th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations, Chinese President Xi Jinping put forward a vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind,China's answer to building new international relations.
"In any case, such a policy, such a vision, takes into account the ability of every country, culture, civilization and economy, to take an equal place in the future world," Mikov said.
This would be a future without wars, international conflicts, or interference by any power, he said.
China's continued adherence to the UN Charter, as well as consistent follow-up and support for this sustainable world order, has demonstrated the country's pursuit of its great goal for a shared future, Mikov said.
ENHANCING INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION
Mikov said the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by China in 2013 is one of the best cooperation mechanisms to build a community with a shared future, which has gained more and more supporters.
"It connects Europe and Asia, builds infrastructure links, and overcomes customs and tariff barriers that hinder international trade," Mikov said.
Besides, the "16+1" mechanism, or the China-Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) cooperation framework, a platform created in 2012 by China and 16 CEE countries, is also useful and necessary, Mikov said.
"This cooperation mechanism will enable Bulgaria and other CEE countries to actively engage in the realization of the great Belt and Road Initiative," he said.
Mikov said considering the opportunities brought by China, Bulgaria should fully express its desire to join the programs and make good use of the chances offered.
During the country's rotating Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the first half of the year, Bulgaria had the responsibility to promote European participation in these initiatives, Mikov added.