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Remarks by Acting Consul General Jin Qian at the Reception Celebrating 71st Anniversary of the Founding of the PRC
2020/10/28

Hon. Peter Tinley MLA, Minister for Housing; Fisheries; Veterans Issues; Asian Engagement, Representative of Hon. Primer Mark McGowan

Hon. Bill Marmion MLA, Deputy Leader of the Opposition; Shadow Minister for Mines and Petroleum; Local Government; Science, Representative of Hon. Liza Harvey MLA, Leader of Opposition

Mr. Adam Handley, State President of ACBC Western Australia Branch

Mr. David Sun, President of CCCA Western Australia

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good evening! Today's Strategic Bilateral Engagement Dialogue between China and WA is just as timely as fruitful. Thank you Hon. Minister Tinley for your very positive and inspiring input and I highly appreciate the frank and open discussions on trade and investment opportunities between China and WA in the post-COVID era this afternoon. Now we are here celebrating the 71st anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China, special thanks to Mr. Adam Handley and Mr. David Sun for great efforts made to bring about the event during this very unusual time.

Twenty-twenty is an extraordinary year. The COVID-19 pandemic added complication on top of the world's ongoing profound changes unseen in a century. Thanks to the State governments' remarkable leadership and the people's resilience and strength, WA has made significant achievements not only in the battle against the pandemic but also in promoting social economical recovery.

We are very happy to see that WA is the only State that has actually surpassed its Fubruary level, which indicates that things are going well in an overall avtivity sense. Majority of WA businesses have largely returned to normal trading conditions and some are literally doing better than they were before the COVID-19.

Chinese government's comprehensive measures to coordinate epidemic containment and socio-economic development have paid off. Under the strong leadership of the Communist Party of China and the painstaking efforts of the whole country and society, China has taken the lead in the world in both epidamic control and economic recovery. IMF forecasts put China as one of the few countries that will maintain positive growth in 2020. OECD predicts China will be the only country of G20 that will not be suffered recession in 2020.

All this fully demonstrates China's great resilience and vitality. we have every confidence to achieve our goals within the set time frame, that is, to accomplish the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects, and to lift out of poverty all rural residents living under the current poverty line.

This year marks the 71st anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China. Over the past 7 decades, China has made great leaps from gaining independence to becoming prosperous and created a miracle in the history of human development. The once poverty-stricken country is now the world's second largest economy, an important engine of world economic growth.

History has shown that upholding the leadership of the Communist Party of China and socialism with Chinese characteristics holds the key to resolving the current-day problems in China, and it also lights up the way for us to our future.

Dear Friends,

China's development has not only benefited its own people enormously, but also made great contributions to world peace and prosperity. China is the second largest financial contributor to UN peacekeeping operations as well as an important troop provider, sending more than 40,000 personnel over the past three decades and more. It has played a leading role in tackling global challenges such as climate change. China is one of the first to meet the UN Millennium Development Goals. Contributing over 30% to global growth for many years in a row. China has been a major stabiliser and propeller of world economy.

China will grow strong, but will not bully. China has no intention to change or displace any other country. As President Xi Jinping said at the high-level meeting to commemorate 75th UN anniversary, China will never seek hegemony, expansion, or sphere of influence. We have no intention to fight either a Cold War or a hot war with any country. We will continue to narrow differences and resolve disputes with others through dialogue and negotiation. We will continue to advocate exchanges and mutual learning between different civilisations. We are confident that the world will be even better as we work with other countries to build a community with a shared future for mankind. And it will become more prosperous thanks to China's Belt and Road Initiative and its efforts for an open world economy.

The world's second largest economy as it is, China remains a developing country and much awaits to be done in modernization. Its per capita GDP is no more than 1/6 of that of Australia. China will continue to give priority to development, pursue innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development. Bettering the lives of the people is not only a goal for every one of China's initiatives, but also the fundamental purpose of development.

Dear Friends,

China's effective COVID-19 response and head start in business reopening presents us with a good opportunity to promote an open economy at a higher level globally. One month ago, China successfully hosted the 2020 China International Fair for Trade in Services, which is the first major international economic and trade event held by China since the outbreak. It shows China's willingness to join hands with all of the world in this trying time and work together to enable global trade in services to thrive and the world economy to recover at an early date. With the upcoming virtual Canton fair and the 3rd China International Import Expo, China's unwavering opening up incessantly infuses confidence into global economy and China will continue to share development opportunities with the rest of the world.

Dear Friends,

The past 71 years after the founding of New China have seen both China and Australia undergoing tremendous changes. The 71 years have also witnessed remarkable progress in China-Australia relations despite ups and downs. Our countries and peoples have benefited from each other's development. We have become attractive markets of business and investment to each other. And China has been Australia's biggest trade partner for 13 years in a row and is now Australia's largest source of international students and tourists.

China and Australia differ in history, culture, social system and stage of development, so it is natural for us to have disagreements on some issues. What is important is that we should keep to the right direction of bilateral relations, seek common ground despite our differences and meet each other half way. As we stated on many occasions, a sound and stable development of China-Australia relations serves the fundamental interests of the two countries and two peoples, and is conducive to regional prosperity and stability. We need to take an objective view of each other's development paths and social systems, adhere to mutual respect, and properly handle differences. We must insist on treating each other's development as an opportunity rather than a threat, abandon the Cold War mentality, and continue to build trust and remove suspicion. It is important for us to maintain mutually beneficial cooperation and close people-to-people exchanges, and to create a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory business environment for companies from both sides. We hope that the Australian side could work with us to carry forward bilateral relations along the right track on the basis of mutual respect and benefit. As long as we have our long-term and larger interests in mind, increase positive factors and remove obstacles, we will certainly forge a closer and dynamic Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between us.

As the largest state in Australia, WA continues to play a leading role in China-Australia relations and bilateral cooperation. I am so glad to see that the WA State Government and the broad society, in particular the business community, remain a firm and vocal advocate of developing long term friendly relationship with China.

At the most difficult time of the outbreak of COVID-19 in China, Western Auatralian people, businesses and social groups quickly reached out to help us. Such expressions of friendship will always be remembered and cherished by the Chinese people. At the same time, China also wasted no time in managing our supply of PPEs to WA after WA was confronted with the virus. The fact our people joining hands to fight the pandemic shows that China-Australia friendship has a solid social foundation, which is the hope and ballast of our relations.

ACBC Western Australia, CCCA Perth Branch and its member companies over the years have played active roles in promoting the trade and investment cooperation and the overall relationship between our two sides. The close interactions between our businesses have considerably boosted our cultural and people-to-people exchanges and cooperation, which has deepened mutual understanding, friendship and affinity between our peoples.

In no more than a month time, WA business representives will head to Shanghai to attend the 3rd China International Import Expo. I hope more transactions be made and broader buyer-seller networks be established through the event. If China has really been an important contributing factor to Australia's 29 years of uninterrupted economic growth, we would like to continue playing a key role to Australia's economic recovery post COVID-19.

Dear friends,

At this crucial moment, we need to rise up to challenges and act with swiftness. Faced with similar immense tasks of defeating virus, stabilizing economy and protecting livelihoods in the post-COVID world, China and Australia have a thousand reasons to keep our Comprehensive Strategic Partnership thriving but not a single reason to undermine or even decouple our ties. As I have stressed in the article published by the West Australian on the eve of Chinese National Day, which is also the title of the article, winter always turns to spring. And I do believe the future of China Australia relations will be promising and bright. Let's make joint efforts to bring our bilateral relationship back on the right track at an early date, and deliver more benefits to our two countries and beyond.

In conclusion, may I propose a toast:

To the 71st anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China;

To the healthy and stable development of China-Australia relations;

Cheers!

Thank you!

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