Changsha committed to building national platform for culture and creativity

BEIJING, May 28, 2018

The International Youth Forum on Creativity and Heritage Along the Silk Road was recently held in Changsha, a city in central China. Seventy-three young representatives from 51 countries along the Belt and Road had the chance to experience the unique local culture, and participate in discussions about protecting cultural heritage and driving development in creative ways.

The forum is a platform specifically for young people to apply their creativity in protecting cultural heritage. It not only demonstrates the rise of a new economic paradigm for countries along the Belt and Road, but also calls for the world to take a path of sustainable development in society and civilization.

Changsha is a city with a history of more than 3,000 years. From the Yuelu Academy, to the Tongguan Kiln and the Mawangdui Tombs, every ancient structure and historical relic here is a mark of the city’s splendid culture. Changsha is also home to its many intangible cultural heritages like the Hunan Embroidery, the Liuyang Fireworks, the Flower Drum Opera and the Shadow Puppetry, each a special building block on which the city’s cultural and creative industry grows. Backed by such a rich collection of cultural resources, the city is looking to become China’s smart manufacturing center, its innovation and creativity center, as well as a key transportation hub.

The world has already witnessed one of Changsha’s treasures – the magnificent fireworks at the opening ceremonies of recent Olympic Games come from Liuyang in Changsha, known as the home of fireworks and firecrackers in China, and the birthplace of fireworks in the world. Since their inventor, Li Tian, lit his first firecracker here 1,400 years ago, Liuyang has kept innovating on this craft, combining new technologies with arts and craftsmanship. Liuyang’s world famous fireworks and firecrackers now export to more than 100 countries and regions.

Liuyang’s fireworks is only one example of what Changsha’s diverse cultural creative industry is capable of. A large number of industrial projects represented by the Malanshan Cultural Creative Industrial Park for Creative Videos have taken root in the city, paving the way for VR technologies, animation productions and digital media to thrive. Entertainment, publishing, animation and other cultural creative sectors have not only fueled the transformation of Changsha’s economy, but also led the way for the cultural creative industry of the whole country. And last November, Changsha was named the “City of Media Arts” in the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

China, with its Belt and Road Initiative, is looking to contribute to the exchanges, mutual learning, and prosperous development of human civilizations by building communication platforms among all countries. And Changsha sets a good example.

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