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Speech at the Reception in Celebration of the 69th Anniversary of the Founding of the P. R. of China
2018/10/02

Your Royal Highness Princess Pilolevu,

Honorable Prime Minister ’Akilisi Pohiva,

Honorable Speaker Lord Fakafanua,

Honorable Ministers of the Cabinet, Nobles of the Realm, Members of the Parliament,

Members of the Diplomatic Corps,

Members of the Chinese Community,

Ladies, gentlemen and friends,

Malo e lelei! Good evening! Thank you for attending our National Day reception. First of all, on behalf of the Chinese Embassy in Tonga, I’d like to extend warm welcome to all the distinguished guests for your presence.

October 1st is the National Day of China, and this year marks the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. Over the past more than half century, especially the 40 years since China adopted the reform and opening-up policy, under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC), the Chinese people have successfully blazed a development path that suits China’s conditions and brought earth-shaking changes to the country by constantly working hard and sticking to reforms and external engagement. As the Socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era, China’s GDP has increased to 12 trillion U.S. Dollars in 2017 from the 174.9 billion U.S dollars in 1977, averaging an annual growth rate of around 9.5%. About 700 million people were lifted out of poverty which accounted for more than 70% of the global total over the same period. China has now firmly retained its position of the second biggest economy, the biggest industrial producer, the biggest trader of goods and the holder of the biggest foreign exchange reserves in the world.

This year has seen notable changes in the global economic and trade context, which are persistently affecting the Chinese economy as it is deeply integrated into the world economy. Facing the challenges such as the growing trend of trade protectionism and backlash against globalization, the Chinese government and people rose to the difficulties by deepening reform, expanding opening-up and advancing innovation. China’s economy has been keeping a stable performance with good momentum for growth. In the first half of this year, it grew by 6.8 percent and has been operating within a medium high range for 12 consecutive quarters. China’s economic structure and growth mode have greatly changed. Emerging and high-tech industries are growing at around 10 percent. New growth drivers accounted for over one third of the economic growth. The final consumption and service industry contributed around 60% to the overall economic growth.

According to the development goals set by the 19th National Congress of the CPC held in October last year, China will complete the building of the moderately prosperous society in an all-round way by 2020, basically realize the socialist modernization by 2035, and China will become a strong and modern socialist country by the middle of this century. To achieve these goals, we will work even harder to advance reform, opening-up and innovation, speed up the shift from traditional drivers of growth to new ones, improve the quality and efficiency of the economy and keep its growth at a medium-high rate for the coming years. We firmly believe that the Chinese economy has a bright prospect of development. The Chinese dream of national prosperity, rejuvenation and more happiness for the people will definitely be realized. At the same time, China will make new contribution to the growth and prosperity of the global economy and lay a more solid foundation for expanding the mutually beneficial cooperation between China and the Pacific Island Countries.

Ladies, gentlemen and friends,

As the biggest developing country in the world, China and the Pacific Island Countries including Tonga share broad common interests. Over the past decades, in the spirit of mutual respect and treating each other as equals, China has conducted friendly cooperation in various fields with the Pacific Island countries with the aim of achieving common development. The cooperation has always been transparent and open. China’s development of relations with the Pacific Island Countries is not against any third party, and will not affect the relations between the Pacific Island Countries and other countries. Never seeking the sphere of influence or engaged in vicious competition, China is always ready to carry out trilateral cooperation according to the needs of the Pacific Island Countries so as to jointly promote the peace, stability and prosperity of the Pacific Island region.

In the international affairs, under the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Diplomacy, we will firmly oppose unilateralism and power politics and stick to multi-lateralism and collaboration on equal basis. We will stay committed to the strategy of opening-up for win-win results, advance the building of a community of shared future for mankind and make the global governance system better represent the will and interests of the majority of countries, especially the developing countries. For the Belt and Road initiative, we will follow the approach of pursuing the greater good and shared interests and the concept of sincerity, real results, amity and good faith, uphold the principles of achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration and work hand in hand with countries all over the world to jointly build the Belt and Road, achieving the objective of common development and universal progress.

Ladies and gentlemen, friends,

This year, under the care and guidance of the state leaders of our two countries and with the concerted efforts of both sides, the China-Tonga relations have made new progress with frequent exchanges at the top and other levels and ever-deepening mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields, which have brought new tangible benefits to the two peoples. We have been enjoying mutual trust and mutual support on the issues related to each other’s core interests and major concerns and effectively safeguarded our common interests.

In about one month, we will usher in the 20th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Tonga and jointly host a series of activities of celebration. Confronted with complex and changeable international and regional situation, both our sides value more the good momentum of development of the bilateral ties, and are full of expectations of a brighter future of the relations. I’d like to reiterate that China stands ready to make joint efforts with the Tongan side to continuously carry out the important consensus reached by the two Heads of State, further strengthen friendly exchanges and practical collaboration, so as to push our strategic partnership featuring mutual respect and common development to a new level and bring more benefits to the peoples of our two countries.

In conclusion, I’d like to propose a toast,

To the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China,

To the health of Their Majesties King Tupou VI and Queen Nanasipauu and all the distinguished guests,

To the brighter future of the China-Tonga relations,

Cheers!

Malo Aupito!Thank you!

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