SINGAPORE, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- A high-level forum involving some 80 senior officials from China and Singapore concluded here on Saturday, marking a milestone in the bilateral cooperation in social management.
Bilateral cooperation have been expanding fast over the past decades, but it was the first social management conference involving many senior officials from China's central government and CPC Central Committee as well as the Singapore government.
Chen Xunqiu, minister at the Office of the Central Committee Office for Comprehensive Social Management of China, and Singapore 's Acting Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports Chan Chun Sing exchanged letters on the sharing of knowledge and experiences in social management at the opening ceremony on Friday.
Zhou Yongkang, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, and Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean witnessed the ceremony.
The two sides agreed to make social management one of the areas covered by the China-Singapore Joint Steering Council for Bilateral Cooperation and establish regular exchange mechanisms.
Sun Zhigang, vice minister at China's National Development and Reform Commission, said the world's largest developing country will continue to push forward reforms in income distribution in pace with the practical conditions of China, Sun said.
Chan said Singapore and China share some of the challenges.
"Over the past few decades, both China and Singapore have achieved strong economic growth and job creation. This has created jobs and raised living standards for our citizens. But it has also brought about social issues that are typically associated with more developed economies," he said at the forum on Saturday.
The senior officials from China and Singapore shared knowledge and experiences and exchanged views on social management under the ever changing social environment.
Some of the officials highlighted the issue of widening income gap amid the trend of globalization. Chinese officials shared how China has effectively lifted hundreds of millions out of poverty in recent years.
A senior official from the Suzhou Industrial Park shared how authorities had gradually come to realize the significance of labor unions in social management over the years.
The Chinese delegation also includes senior officials such as Shen Weichen, vice minister of the Central Publicity Department of the CPC. They had visited Singapore's Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports, as well as the National Trades Union Congress and its flagship supermarket chain FairPrice.
Some of the provincial leaders and governments in China had sent officials to learn from Singapore's experience in economic development and social management in the past.
Chen spoke highly of the discussions at the forum on Saturday on social cohesion in a multicultural world, grassroot organizations and the labor unions.