James Kon Working in solidarity to fight against the pandemic, promoting economic recovery, and safeguarding regional and global peace, stability and development were the focus of the ‘Special Leaders’ Meeting on Asean-China People-to-People Friendship Organizations’ held via online yesterday. Brunei-China Friendship Association President Dr Mohammad Firdaus bin Abdul Rahman, Vice President Lim Boon Hwa and Deputy Secretary-General Ng Hui Fong participated. Dr Mohammad Firdaus said, “Even though it has not been able to travel, like visiting friends in ASEAN-China countries due to COVID-19, it had not deterred from reaching out and keeping in touch closely with one another via online. “This, has thus built a stronger friendship.” Dr Mohammad Firdaus added, “Under the new normal, we should fully utilise digital platforms to repair and maintain our economy by adapting and making use of digital commerce, online trade and services.” He hoped that the people from ASEAN-China countries would stay safe and healthy as “we continue to hold hands together, stay strong together, fight the pandemic together and rebuild economy and trade under the new normal”. China-ASEAN Association President Gu Xiulian stressed the importance of all the countries in China-ASEAN region to come together for mutual support in the sustainability of regional trade and services. Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC) President Lin Songtian concluded the Special Leaders’ Meeting at noon. Meanwhile, CPAFFC Deputy Director General Cheng Haibo also chaired two meetings – ‘Thematic Forum One: ASEAN-China Economic Cooperation in the post-COVID-19 era and the participation of people-to-people friendship organisations’, and ‘Thematic Forum Two: The active role of traditional medicine in pandemic prevention and treatment’ – attended by Ng Hui Fong on behalf of Dr Mohammad Firdaus, and concluded by CPAFFC Secretary-General Yuan Mindao at 5pm. Experts and scholars from ASEAN member countries in fields of economy and traditional medicine were also present discussing Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and cross-border e-commerce.