Nearly 20 international friends from more than 10 countries –
including the United States, Germany, Kazakhstan and Russia – on Feb 24
visited Xi'an International Trade and Logistics (ITL) Park, located in
Xi'an, capital of Northwest China's Shaanxi province.
Nearly 20 expats visit ITL Park in Xi'an on Feb 24. [Photo/xa.gov.cn]
They first visited the Xi'an International Port Station – the departure and return destination for the China-Europe Chang'an freight train.
When a large number of containers and heavy trucks suddenly came into view, the situation rapidly got hectic – and the frenetic and orderly cargo transportation impressed the visitors. They observed that Xi'an is not only a famous historical and cultural city, but also is doing an efficient job in international trade.
At Xi'an Aiju Grain and Oil Industry Group, which they learned was a regular customer for flour from Kazakhstan, several students from Central Asian countries spoke of relatives and friends in their hometowns who also eat the same flour.
On the day, a culture exchange event was also held at Shaanxi Silk Road City Holding Group, an e-commerce company in ITL Park – with the expats sharing their personal experiences of living, working, starting a business and studying in Xi'an.
Yuan Chaohui, president of Shaanxi Silk Road City Holding Group, talked about his cross-border love with his wife Anita Jumekenova from Kazakhstan, as well as his company's experiences in launching China-Kazakhstan cross-border e-commerce within the Belt and Road Initiative.
Wenxuan, a Kazakhstan student at Shaanxi University of Chinese
Medicine, shares a story during a culture exchange event. [Photo/Xi'an
"I am a foreigner, but not an outsider," said Ma Wenxuan, a Kazakhstan student at Shaanxi University of Chinese Medicine facing the COVID-19 pandemic in Xi’an in 2021 – in an observation that touched many people.
Ma said that he has been living in Xi'an for eight years and he has the strong impression that the speed of development in the city is nowadays very fast. "In the past, there were only buses to Xi'an's urban area, but now the subway has been repaired, making it very convenient to travel," he added.
German citizen Marcus Meyer is a proud resident of Xi'an. "Xi'an has given me a sense of belonging," he said. Due to his love for Xi'an, Meyer co-founded the online platform VivaXian with a few like-minded expat friends in April, 2021.
By shooting videos that show Xi'an's history and culture – as well as its fashion and modernity, tolerance and diversity, innovation and vitality – the platform is said to be enabling the world to gain a better understanding Xi'an.
"Xi'an's local culture is very rich and there are not just one, two or three places of interest. There are also many distinctive folk cultures here," said an international friend from Russia, who teaches at Xi'an International Studies University.
For expats living in the city, Xi'an is an ancient city with a long history and a splendid culture.
expat from Russia, who teaches at Xi'an International Studies
University, shares her story about the city. [Photo/Xi'an news network]