King Harald and Queen Sonja of Norway are on a State Visit to China from October 11th to the 19th to celebrate and build diplomatic, economic, and cultural ties. They started their visit in Dunhuang in the Gansu Province, where they visited a Solar Park that was China’s first large-scale solar power plant when it opened in 2010, before visiting Dunhuang’s largest nursery and attending an Official Dinner with the provincial authorities in Gansu. The following day, the King and Queen visited the Mogao caves outside Dunhuang, which are found on the UNESCO World Heritage Site, and host one of the world’s largest collections of Buddhist art.
That evening, King Harald and Queen Sonja traveled to Beijing, where they were officially welcomed by representatives of Chinese authorities. The following morning, the Royal Couple opened the Sino-Norwegian Symposium for Social Disciplines, before attending an outdoor roller ski event in Beijing Olympic Park and a luncheon hosted by Mr Gou Zhongwen, Minister of Sports. In the evening, the King and Queen hosted a Sino-Norwegian friendship dinner at The Phoenix Centre in Beijing.
On October 16th, King Harald and Queen Sonja were officially welcomed by President Xi Jinping and Premier Peng Liyuan at the Hall of the People in Heaven’s Peace, where they also attended the State Banquet. The King opened the Norway-China Business Summit and the King and Queen attending the opening of the new book “Edvard Munch. Total paintings” in the Norwegian residence in Beijing.
The following day, the King and Queen moved on to Shanghai, where they met Norwegians at a Reception at the former British Consulate, followed by an official dinner at Xingguo Hotel with Shanghai’s Mayor Ying Yong and party secretary Li Qiang. The following day, they attended the “China and Norway – a wealth of opportunities” at Shanghai’s largest cruise terminal and the “A taste of sea / Tasting the Ocean” Dinner. On the final day, King Harald and Queen Sonja visited the United World College Changshu and the famous Humble Administrator’s Garden in Suzhou.