|Consul General's Speech at "Beautiful China" Tourism Promotion|
Dear guests, ladies and gentlemen,
It gives me great pleasure to be attending today's event, which enables me to get acquainted with friends of the tourism sector as the new Chinese Consul General in Manchester.
You must have been aware that Touring Manchester has been gaining popularity in recent years and appeared quite frequently on hot search list. According to Marketing Manchester, Greater Manchester's tourism generates nearly 8 billion pounds for Greater Manchester annually, providing 100,000 jobs and attracts over 100 million visitors to the area. Manchester airport currently handles 20 million passengers a year, which is quite a considerable achievement as compared against the 500,000 population of Manchester, bearing evidence to Manchester's appeal and fully exhibiting the spirit of Manchester bees. Please allow me to pay tribute to you all on behalf of the Chinese Consulate General in Manchester.
Ladies and Gentlemen, since Manchester got twinned with Wuhan of China in 1986, the two cities have forged increasingly closer ties with each other. Especially since the launch of the direct flight between Beijing and Manchester, we see more and more Chinese visitors here in Manchester. Another notable fact is that Manchester plays home to the second largest Chinese community, second only to London. It is said that registered voters of Chinese origin here even outnumber that of London. I would like to bring your attention to the fact that the north of England is attracting more and more Chinese students amounting to a total of 70,000, of which 5,000 are studying with the University of Manchester. In this sense, Manchester is closest to China in emotional terms and is being regarded as the second hometown by more and more Chinese nationals who have contributed to local development and served as indispensable bridges between the two nations. In the meantime, Britain is becoming more and more active seeking closer collaboration with China. This year marks the 5th anniversary of China's 'Belt and Road' Initiative, within the framework of which we see a perfect match between the Northern Powerhouse Plan and China's regional development plan, further expanding common interests of both countries. Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to Manchester in 2015 greatly expedited the process of the integration of mutual interests. We are delighted to hear that Metro Mayor Andy Burnham will be heading a visit to China shortly and Manchester Camerata is also taking the direct flght to China this week, giving a roadshow in 5 cities, conveying to Chinese audience the goodwill of Macunians embodied in beautiful melodies.
Ladies and gentlemen, to quote from an English writer, 'Rough diamonds are girls' best friend', I would like to use rough diamonds to describe our friendship as I believe tourism is the best instrument to grind and polish a diamond. I expect our friendship could grow to match the beauty of Manchester girls through inbound and outbound tourism between the two countries, for which the Chinese Consulate pledges our commitment.