CAIRO, July 4 (Xinhua) — The shared heritage of the Chinese and Egyptian civilizations fostered through trade via the ancient Silk Road was highlighted in an international cultural exchange event held here in Egypt’s capital late on Wednesday.

Under the theme of “Shared Heritage, Shared Future,” the event gathered cultural officials, scholars, and diplomats from China and Egypt, as well as UNESCO representatives.

During the event, scholars delivered keynote speeches to promote bilateral cooperation in preserving cultural heritage and to exchange experiences in the conservation of heritage sites.

Hu Kaihong, deputy chief of China’s Central Office of Cultural and Ethical Progress, said the event is of great significance to promoting the vision of equality, mutual learning, dialogue, and inclusiveness among civilizations, implementing the Global Civilization Initiative, and strengthening exchanges and mutual learning among civilizations.

Chinese Ambassador to Egypt Liao Liqiang said in his address to the event that “as two ancient civilizations, China and Egypt have a common heritage that we both are proud of.”

China is willing to work with Egypt to implement the strategic consensus reached by the two heads of state on building a community with a shared future and promoting common development and prosperity for the two nations, Liao noted.

In his presentation, Jiang Bo, director of the Center of Maritime Archaeology at China’s Shandong University, introduced the Chinese experience in protecting newly enlisted UNESCO World Heritage Sites in China, including east China’s Quanzhou, the Archaeological Ruins of Liangzhu City, and the Cultural Landscape of Old Tea Forests of the Jingmai Mountain in Pu’er.

He meanwhile elaborated on how China’s practices contribute to the global cause of world heritage protection.

Heidi Bayoumy, an associate professor of the Department of English Language and Literature at the Faculty of Arts, Cairo University, said it is glad to see a growing number of translated Chinese works in Egypt and more Chinese language departments established in Egyptian universities.

She told Xinhua at the event that mutual translation of Chinese and Arabic literary works is a key “gateway” to mutual understanding of each other’s cultures.

During the event, Mehrdad Shabahang, UNESCO’s specialist for the Silk Roads Programme, brought audiences back to the historical and geographical imprints of exchanges in the fields of architecture, cultural legacies, and urbanization between countries and regions along the ancient Silk Road.

He also highlighted the need to collaborate to preserve the World Heritage sites amid challenges including climate change, stressing, “We need to share experience and knowledge for facing and responding to these challenges.”

An exhibition was held at the event with a focus on the birth and growth of heritage cities along the ancient trade route connecting China and Egypt, as well as China’s achievements in global cooperation on preserving cultural heritage.

Under the support of the UNESCO office in Cairo, the event was jointly hosted by the municipality of Nanjing, the capital city of east China’s Jiangsu Province, as well as China’s Southeast University and Tongji University.