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Chinese floats feature in Lord Mayor's Parade

By Cecily Liu | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-11-11 16:21

London's landmark annual spectacular event Lord Mayor's Show will feature three Chinese groups which are staging floats in celebration of China and the UK's close financial collaboration.

The Lord Mayor's Show, which follows a tradition spanning over 800 years, will be a full day celebration on Saturday, bringing together more than 7,000 people, 200 horses and more than 150 floats to make the three mile procession from Mansion House, past St Paul's Cathedral to the Royal Courts of Justice and back to Mansion House.

The event marks Charles Bowman taking office as the 690th elected Lord Mayor of the City of London.

The three Chinese organizations staging floats in the show are the Bank of China, the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in London and the Zhejiang UK Association.

The Bank of China's float comprises of three giant fans, the first depicts the UK and China's flags, the second shows Peking Opera costumes and the third is themed on the China-led Belt and Road initiative.

The UK and China flag symbolizesthe close relationship between the two countries and their bright future. The Peking Opera costumes shows an important aspect of Chinese culture for a UK audience, while the China-led Belt and Road initiative depicts growing connectivity between Asia and Europe.

The Bank of China is the oldest Chinese bank to establish in the City of London, having established in London in 1929. In 2017, its engagement with the City of London strengthened as it was chosen to chair the Associate of Foreign Banks, an association that represents the voice of around 250 foreign banks in the UK.

The Zhejiang UK Association, founded in 2009, also for the first time staged a float in the Lord Mayor's Show. Its float is themed on the China-led Belt and Road initiative.

First proposed by President Xi Jinping in 2013, the China-led Belt and Road initiative seeks to promote trade and investment links between Asia and Europe through infrastructure investment. The City of London has been keen to promote London as a finance hub for the Belt and Road related investments.

The Zhejiang UK Association float is created in the shape of a train, to commemorate the significant moment of the Zhejiang-based company Yiwu Timex Industrial Investment operating the first China-UK freight train earlier this year. The train carried trade cargo from Yiwu, China's small commodities hub, to London, and provided importers and exporters a faster and more cost-effective option of transport.

The float's exterior is decorated with pictures of China's Great Wall, Peking Opera, and the famous West Lake, in Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province. Other pictures showcase important events, such as the landmark G20 meeting gala performance in Hangzhou 2016, and the event of China's 26th naval escort fleet's calling in London in October this year.

Meanwhile the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in London also staged a float to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China.

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