Top Chinese legislator Wu Bangguo opened the second Chinese culture festival in Bulgaria with a speech stressing the significance of cultural exchanges in international communication and in promoting harmonized coexistence of different nations.
Wu, chairman of the Standing Committee of the Chinese National People's Congress, said activities in the culture festival will help the Bulgarian people learn more about Chinese culture and the country as a whole.
He also said exchanges between different cultures will further the development and prosperity of the cultures involved and promote harmonized coexistence and progress of the whole human society through dialogue and communication.
As the biggest and most comprehensive event of cultural exchanges between China and Bulgaria since the two countries established diplomatic ties 55 years ago, the festival will last for three weeks. To be presented to Bulgarian audiences will be Chinese movies and arts and the Chinese language.
Several hundred people, including Bulgarian officials, ambassadors to the country and representatives of all walks of life attended the opening ceremony.
China and Bulgaria signed cultural cooperation agreements twice, in 1952 and 1987 respectively, which mapped out annual cooperation plans on culture, science and education.
China has been holding an average of 25 cultural and art exhibitions a year in Bulgaria in recent years.
Cultural exchanges between the two countries reached a new high in 2003 when China held its first culture festival in Bulgaria.
Wu arrived in Sofia Friday for a two-day official good-will visit after wounding up a weeklong visit to Russia, the first leg of his four-nation tour, which will also take him to Denmark and Norway.
(Xinhua News Agency May 31, 2004)