On Jan 22, the Chinese Festivals on the Silk Road – Spring Festival Salon was launched simultaneously in Kuala Lumpur and Beijing via video link. The event was attended by Lin Liying, president of the China National Publications Import & Export (Group) Co., Ltd.; Song Qiang, executive director (president) and editor-in-chief of China Publishing & Media Journal; Xu Zechen, deputy editor of People's Literature magazine, writer; Zhang Xin, chief editor of CITIC Press Group; Zhang Song, member of Chinese Folk Literature and Art Association, vice-president of Panjin Federation of Literary and Art Circles, president of Panjin Folk Literature and Art Association; National Book Council of Malaysia Director Mohd Khair Ngadiron; and the MCA Youth Chief Nicole Wong Siaw Ting. They were joined by an audience –in-person and online – of over 80, including Italian students and youngsters from Hong Kong and Chinese Taipei studying in the mainland, and Malaysian students and young scholars in Kuala Lumpur.
The Chinese and Malaysian participants officially unveiled the Malaysian club, the first Global Youth Readers club to open overseas. KB Asia, on behalf of Chinese and Malaysian co-hosts, presented Chinese books on behalf of Global Youth Readers to the Selangor Public Library Corporation. At the reading salon, participants exchanged views on such books as The 24 Solar Terms in Poems and Hi I'm China. On the site, the 24 Festive Drums performance – an intangible cultural heritage of Malaysia, calligraphy writing and festive food tasting were presented, which drove the event to the climax.
According to Lin Liying, president of the China National Publications Import & Export (Group) Co., Ltd., the friendship between China and Malaysia spans thousands of years, and the two countries have profound historical heritage and deep cultural identity. The publishers of the two countries, through the Beijing International Book Fair and the Kuala Lumpur Book Fair, have maintained good cultural exchanges and cooperation. The Global Youth Readers, initiated by China National Publications Import & Export (Group) Co., Ltd., will enable the youths of the two countries to further enhance understanding and mutual friendship.
National Book Council of Malaysia Director Mohd Khair Ngadiron said: “The Global Youth Readers will be a bridge between the two countries to strengthen cultural exchanges and enhance cultural understanding. Through the reading and sharing activities, young readers in Malaysia will be able to learn more about the beautiful literature from China.”
The MCA Youth chief Nicole Wong Siaw Ting said: “A good book is like a wise teacher and friend. Poems from the Tang and Song dynasties and verses from the Yuan Dynasty are precious food for the mind left by the ancestors, and they deserve vivacious reading.
Representatives of Malaysian youth readers said that the event really showed them the “beauty of China’s cultural and natural landscape and China’s excellent traditional culture.”
The Global Youth Readers is an international exchange platform for young readers jointly launched by China National Publications Import & Export (Group) Co., Ltd. and its overseas business partners. It aims to host interesting activities of various kinds to help overseas young readers better understand Chinese culture from different dimensions, and promote their exchanges and mutual learning. This is the club’s first event in 2022, with more to follow in other countries.