Romanian speaks of his love for Shandong
(chinadaily.com.cn)| Updated : 2021-11-23Print Print
[Video provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
When asked why he has chosen to live and work in Shandong, Vusan Aurelian Constantin, a representative of Cluj County, Romania, highlights the unique lifestyle in the province that is unlike common expat destinations such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.
"Come to Shandong and try it for yourself. The lifestyle and quality of life here is hard to find elsewhere. People who come to Shandong would usually want to stay," he said.
Vusan Aurelian Constantin gives an interview in Shandong province. [Photo by He Yanhai/sdchina.com]
Constantin first set foot in Shandong in 2013 when he was posted to the province as a representative of Romania's Cluj County. Although he did not intend for this career stint to last long, the hospitable locals, beautiful scenery and rapid pace of development had him hooked. He ended up staying in Shandong for six years.
Constantin noted that his exposure to Chinese culture did not end when he returned home in 2019 as his hometown of Cluj County is home to Romania's largest Confucius Institute.
"Although Confucius Institutes are for university students, many parents of children aged between 6 and 8 also want their children to be educated in Chinese. As far as I know, many primary schools in Romania have applied to Confucius Institutes for Chinese education support," said Constantin.
He added that the Confucius Institute has enhanced the Romanian people's understanding of Chinese language and culture, and he hopes educational and cultural exchanges between the two countries will be further enhanced in the future.
The Romanian soon found himself back in familiar territory when he was invited to attend the fourth China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai in 2021.
"In the past two years, my life and work have changed greatly, but the only thing that has not changed is me missing China and Shandong. This time around, I went to Shanghai and Shenzhen before returning to Shandong. When I set foot in Shandong, it felt as if I had returned home," he said.
Vusan Aurelian Constantin poses for a photo during the fourth CIIE in Shanghai. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
"In addition to culture and education, Romania and Cluj County have great potential for cooperation with China and Shandong province in infrastructure, energy, electric vehicles and many other fields," he said.
Constantin believes that the two sides can further deepen cooperation and achieve mutual benefits through the China-CEEC cooperation mechanism, especially in the field of electric vehicles as Romania is currently promoting the use of pure electric public transportation.
Constantin said he is currently in talks with Zhongtong Bus from Liaocheng to establish cooperative ties in this field. He hopes to be able to introduce electric cars from Shandong to the Romanian market one day.
"Apart from official business, the biggest reason for my return to Shandong is to meet some old friends," Constantin said.
"The personalities of Shandong people are very similar to those of my hometown in Cluj County -- they are hospitable and trustworthy," he said, "I often tell people that I don't have to worry about dealing with Shandong people because they are very honest."
Constantin said that he sees himself as an ambassador for Shandong in Romania as he is always introducing Shandong to everyone he meets and telling them that they have to travel to the province to truly witness its spectacular development and sights.
"I have always dreamt of inviting my Romanian friends and family to Shandong one summer. After experiencing it for themselves, they will definitely love it," he said.
"I like Shandong very much. I like Shandong food very much. I am a native of Shandong."