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Successful Olympics raise China's profile
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China has hosted a "very successful" Olympic Games, which has helped the world know more about the country, former Dutch ambassador to China Dirk Jan van den Berg told Xinhua in a recent interview.

Van den Berg, who returned home in February after a two-and-a- half-year tenure in China, said China's booming economy will make it an increasingly important player in the world and the West should shed its Cold War mentality and engage with China in a constructive way.


The organization of the Beijing Olympic Games was "very successful," and Dutch media's assessment was also positive, van den Berg said.

"I think the Games have been very successful and I can only congratulate the Chinese authorities on being able to achieve that," said van den Berg, who is now president of the executive board of Delft University of Technology.

Van den Berg called the opening ceremony "an immense spectacle," which allowed audiences worldwide to have a glimpse of Chinese culture and history.

"The Games demonstrated China's ability to organize such a large-scale event. I am confident that the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai will turn out as a big success too," he said.

Van den Berg said the Games has further boosted China's international image and also aroused unprecedented interest in China.

The Beijing Olympics has made China a hot topic in the Netherlands. In an average Dutch bookstore one can find plenty of books about China. Dutch television stations also broadcast an array of interesting programs about China.

For many Dutch citizens, or Westerners in general, China remains a relatively little known country, van den Berg said. "It is a bit surprising that in fact not many people do understand the pace with which China is developing."

Therefore it is important to draw people's attention to what's happening in China so that they will "understand that China is well on its way to become a very important country," he said.

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