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Remarks by H.E. Consul General Ruan Ping at the Reception Marking the 69th Anniversary of the Founding of the People's Republic of China

Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,

Good afternoon. First I would like to extend a warm welcome to all of you present today as we celebrate the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

In the early years of the PRC, it was poverty-stricken and miserably weak. Led by the Chinese Communist Party, the Chinese people have made unremitting efforts to explore a path suited to our national conditions. Isolated and subjected to blockades internationally, we have pursued an independent and self-reliant development path to complete the socialist transformation as well as to establish a total-factor industrial system. In 1978, China embarked on the historic journey of reform and opening-up. Our endeavor started from rural areas to cities, from pilot programs to nationwide projects and from economic restructuring to the comprehensive deepening of reform. The Chinese people have courageously engaged in self-revolution and self-reform, constantly made improvements to the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and kept overcoming institutional and systematic obstacles to development so as to greatly release and develop the productive forces. The focused endeavor in national development and unwavering commitment to reform and opening-up of the Chinese people have brought enormous changes to the country. The Chinese people have embraced the world with open arms, made opening-up a fundamental national policy, pursued development with an open door, and accomplished a great transition from seclusion and semi-seclusion to all-round openness. Today China has grown into the world’s second largest economy, the largest industrial producer, the largest trader of goods, and the holder of the largest foreign exchange reserves. The Chinese people have emerged from a life of shortages and poverty and are now enjoying abundant supply and a moderately prosperous life.

The written history of China dates back to over 4100 years ago. While traditional culture has been carried from generation to generation, dynastic cycle of growing, thriving and declining has repeated itself throughout Chinese history. It shows that openness leads to progress while seclusion leaves one behind. China’s reform and opening-up benefits from the long-term peace and development of the world, meets its people’s aspiration for development, innovation and a better life. It also meets the global trend toward development, cooperation and peace.

The party central committee with Xi Jinping at its core, is a collective leadership of all members that were born in New China and grew up with nation building. They have shouldered the missions of our age and face the challenges of our time with honest and courage. Since the 18th Party Congress, they have led Chinese people in tackling longstanding problems with courage and resolve as well as breaking the impediments of vested interests to see the reform through and bring opening-up to a new height.

With socialism with Chinese characteristics into a new era, a new chapter in China’s effort for shared prosperity with the rest of the world has been ushered. The Chinese people will continue to take bold steps in innovation to boost development. Following the new development vision, the Chinese people will modernize our economic system, deepen the supply-side structural reform, and implement at a faster pace the strategies of innovation-driven development, rural revitalization and coordinated regional development. We will continue to work on targeted poverty alleviation and promote social equity and justice.

The world is undergoing a new round of major development, great change and profound readjustment. Humankind still faces many instabilities and uncertainties. Hegemony and power politics persist; protectionism and unilateralism are mounting. Yet we need to notice that relationships between countries have been focused more on common interests rather than ideological disparities. Ours is an era that “trade cannot be suspended amid trade war while dialogue remains in confrontation”. The world has become a global village where our interests are intertwined and our economic and social progress interconnected. To promote common prosperity and development in today’s world, we have no choice but to pursue greater connectivity and integrated development. The Chinese people will stay committed to pursuing further opening and strengthening cooperation with various sides, implement the strategy of opening-up for win-win results unswervingly, build an open global economy and uphold the multilateral trading system. This way, we will make economic globalization more open, inclusive, balanced and beneficial to all.

The Chinese people will continue to work together with the rest of the world and make greater contribution to humanity. China will stick to the path of peaceful development, actively pursue global partnerships, firmly support multilateralism, and take an active part in reforming the global governance system. By doing so, we will be able to build a new type of international relations and promote a community with a shared future for mankind.

Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,

This year marks the 20th anniversary of China-South Africa diplomatic ties as well as the centenary of the birth of Nelson Mandela. Twenty years ago, it was President Nelson Mandela who had made the major political decision to establish diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China, laying down a strong and solid foundation for China-South Africa relations. The past two decades have recorded historical leapfrog development in China-South Africa relations, from partnership to strategic partnership, then to comprehensive strategic partnership. The bilateral relationship boasts unprecedented political and strategic mutual trust, fruitful economic and trade mutually-beneficial cooperation and prevailing friendship between the two peoples. For 9 consecutive years, China has remained South Africa’s largest trading partner, invested over 25 billion US dollars and creating more than 400,000 job opportunities in South Africa,

As major emerging powers of the international community, China and South Africa have been working closely with each other in United Nations, G20 and other international organizations. China and South Africa are at similar stages of development with similar goals and strategies, thus sharing common interests in seeking peace, cooperation and development. In addition, Ubuntu, "the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity", is in line with the Chinese vision of creating a community of shared future for mankind.

In recent days, the two state visits by our two heads of state, BRICS Johannesburg Summit and FOCAC Beijing Summit have all made great successes. BRICS Summit has adopted the BRICS Partnership on New Industrial Revolution proposed by China and South Africa, creating fresh energy for deepening BRICS cooperation. FOCAC Beijing Summit have connected and combined the Belt and Road Initiative, the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, the African Union’s 2063 Agenda, and the national development strategies of African countries, launching a series of new policies to forge an all-around China-Africa cooperation.

China, the world’s largest developing country, and Africa, the continent with the largest number of developing countries, have similar historical experiences and outlooks on development. More emphases have been given to sharing of technologies and ideas together with infrastructure building in China-Africa cooperation. The two sides have long formed a community with a shared future.

At the 2015 FOCAC Johannesburg Summit, the Chinese president Xi Jinping has announced Ten Major Co-operative Plans with $60billion of financial commitment to Africa. These initiatives are to support Africa to overcome the development bottlenecks of infrastructure, professional and skilled personnel, and capital sources, yielding fruitful results across the continent over the past three years. At the FOCAC Beijing Summit this month, President Xi announced another US$60 billion of financing to Africa in the form of government assistance as well as investment and financing by financial institutions and companies. It is aimed at supporting Africa to foster and develop its capacity for independent development as well as to achieve a win-win China-Africa cooperation and common development at a higher level. China will continue to act as Africa's unchallengeable strongest and most reliable cooperation partner in realizing self-reliant sustainable development and durable peace.

Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,

Weeks ago, the diplomatic staff of our Consulate General paid a visit to Mandela House with respect. The voice of Nelson Mandela seemed to resound around our ears. It goes “Action without vision is only passing time, vision without action is merely day dreaming, but vision with action can change the world”. At present, China-South Africa and China-Africa cooperation embrace new opportunities. As time waits for no man, let us join hands to make more progress on China-South Africa comprehensive strategic partnership, and bring more benefits of our cooperation to more people.

Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,

Notably, today coincides with the traditional Chinese festival Mid-Autumn Day, a day for full moon appreciation and family reunion. The gathering of the guests today has added to our festive mood. On behalf of the Chinese Consulate General, I would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to all those who are concerned with and support the development of China and China-South Africa relationship. I would also like to send our best wishes and greetings to the local Chinese community.

Lastly, let us wish

Our two countries prosperity and our two peoples well-being

China-South Africa relationship a sound and steady growth

Our guests good health, successful career and a good family.

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