|Speech by Consul General Pan on the National Day Reception|
30th September 2014
Lord Lieutenant, Mr Warren Smith,
Lord Mayor of Manchester, Cllr Susan Cooley,
Your Worships, distinguished guest,
Chinese Community leaders and compatriots,
Dear friends, ladies and gentlemen,
Welcome to the reception for celebrating the 65th National Day of the People’s Republic of China.
Tomorrow will be the 1st of October, birthday for the People’s Republic of China. 65 years ago, the People’s Republic of China was formally founded. With that, the Chinese nation ended the century of humiliation, and regained national independence. From then on, the history of the Chinese nation turned a new page.
For 65 years, we safeguarded our national sovereignty and territorial integrity.
For 65 years, we contributed immensely to the peace and development of the world.
For 65 years, especially the 36 years since China adopted the policy of Opening-up and Reform, China’s various courses were equipped with flying wings, and China made countless splendid achievements. Here, let me raise a few examples.
——We maintained the longest high-speed economic growth in human history. For 36 years, China’s economy kept high-speed growth. China became the second largest economy of the world in 2010. Prime Minister Cameron once said, China’s modernization is ten times the speed and 100 times the scale of UK’s historical modernization.
——We relieved the largest amount of people out of poverty in human history. With our own efforts, we relieved tens even hundreds of millions of people out of poverty. According to World Bank, had there not been China’s poverty-alleviating achievements, the total number of world people in poverty would have increased rather than decreased in the past decades.
——We contributed the largest share to world economic growth. This year, China’s GDP is expected to exceed 10 trillion US dollars, and according to The Economist, next year, China’s GDP will grow by 1.2 trillion US dollars. That means China alone will contribute 30 percent to the global economic growth.
——We bring hope and drive to the world economy. Whether during the Asian financial crunch in 1997 or the International Financial Crisis in 2008, China had always been the principal force that dragged the world economy out of quagmire. All the countries that have good economic and trade relations with China benefits from the development of China. Producing for China, exporting to China, and ushering in Chinese investment have become the best choices for many countries to get out of difficulties and secure development.
The reason that we can make the above achievements, all in all, is because we found the right path for China, i.e. Socialism with Chinese Characteristics. The basic aim of this path is to achieve the Chinese Dream of state prosperity, national rejuvenation, and people’s happiness. Right now, all Chinese people are working as one and marching steadily towards the Two-Century Goals and the realization of the Chinese dream of the great revival of the Chinese nation.
Last October, the Communist Party of China held the Third Plenary Session of the 18th Central Committee and released the reform blueprint which was hailed as the“most ambitious” by Financial Times. This blueprint not only set goals, demanding decisive results in all major areas and key fronts, but also laid out road-map, specifying concrete steps and requirements to all social departments. At present, the Chinese governmental departments at different levels are steadily carrying out reforms in accordance with the above-mentioned blueprints, and some results are burgeoning out. In the first half of this year, China’s overall economy grew steadily, with economic structure improved accordingly and industrial upgrading ongoing. China’s GDP grew 7.4%, leading other major world economies.
With the guidance of this far-reaching reform blueprint, China is forging ahead with industrial upgrading, urbanization, info-industrialization, and agricultural modernization. In the next 5 years, China will import more than 10 trillion US Dollars goods, invest more than 500 billion US dollars in other countries, and more than 500 million Chinese will go abroad as tourists. The future of Chinese economy is as bright as ever, and will bring about abundant opportunities to the world.
Ladies and gentlemen,
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the launch of the Five Principles for Peaceful Co-existence, which was jointly initiated by China, India, and Myanmar. China will unswervingly follow the route of peaceful development, unswervingly develop friendly cooperation with all countries in the world on the basis of the Five Principles for Peaceful Co-existence, and unswervingly follow the opening-up strategy of mutual beneficiary and win-win policy. The Chinese dreams channels to the beautiful dreams of all other countries. We are willing to mutually support and help other peoples of the world so as to achieve common development and prosperity.
At present, the China-UK relations is developing well with frequent high level official visits, enhanced mutual political trust, and deepened exchanges and cooperation in many areas.
Last June, China’s Premier Li Keqian paid a successful visit to the UK. Our two countries issued a joint declaration on deepening our bilateral relations, first one in the past decade. It illustrates the picture and set up the framework for China-UK relations in the new era. During the visit, the two sides signed more than 30 cooperative agreements worth over 30 billion US dollars, which cover not only traditional sectors like trade, investment, oil and gas, scientific research and education, but also key sectors of breakthrough like nuclear energy, high-speed railway and finance.
A few days ago, Vice Premier Ma Kai of China held the 6th China-UK Economic and Financial Dialogue with Chancellor Osborne. They also attended the Opening Ceremony of the Joint China-UK Investment Forum, which made good results.
Just like what H.E. Mr Liu Xiaomin, Chinese Ambassador to UK, commented, these China-UK agreements embody the features of complementary advantages and combination of the strong points in China-UK cooperation, and also indicate that the bilateral economic cooperation is moving towards an investment relationship with better quality and further depth.
Regarding investment, last year, Chinese capitals enhanced their activities in the whole UK, and some good results turned out in our consular district.
Beijing Construction Engineering Group invests hugely at the Manchester Airport City project. It was reported that this project could produce more than 2000 jobs.
Dame Nancy Rothwell, president of the University of Manchester, told me that a Chinese company invested in the graphane research of her University.
Several days ago, Sheffield “New Time Square” held a news conference. It is said some Chinese companies invest 65 million pounds on this project.
We believe in the future there will be more Chinese companies to seek development opportunities in this region.
The warmth in the exchanges between China and our consular district is not limited in the growing two-way investments.
It is also reflected in substantial increases in personnel and cultural exchanges. We Chinese people not only like British football. Many British cultural products are also popular in China.
Earlier this year my wife and I were invited to a reception by Leeds Northern Ballet. The artistic director told me that, they had a tour in China at the beginning of this year, and played in the National Theater of Beijing, which is the best in the world. Chinese audience’s acceptance of their performance humbled their expectations. Hallé Orchestra of Manchester was well received by their Chinese audience, too.
Seemingly, when Chinese pianist Lang Lang played solo at the Bridgewater Hall this year, he had to respond to the curtain calls repeatedly and played several extras as the audience kept applauding.
China pays lots of attention and actively supports the development of our Consular District. During the Liverpool Festival of Business, many Chinese cities and organizations took part. Shanghai, the twining Chinese city of Liverpool, sent out a delegation headed by Vice Mayor Zhao Wen. Zhao signed an MOU with Mayor Anderson. We believe their future exchanges will bring about more benefits to the two cities.
Xinin, capital of Qinghai Province of China twinned with Preston, Taicang of Jiangsu Province with Wirral. We hope the twinning cities enhance their exchanges and develop side by side. We also hope for more twinning relations between China and UK, and we are ready to provide assistance.
Ladies and gentlemen,
This is my last time to exchange ideas with you here on this podium. At the moment, I feel a little complicated, and don’t know how to express myself.
Not long ago, I received an order. I will finish my job as the Chinese Consul General in Manchester and move onto next posting.
Three years ago, my whole family arrived here with full expectations and started a new page in our life. I remember that when we left Beijing, it was the golden autumn of October.
As you know, autumn is the season for harvest. After hardworking, in this autumn three years later, I will go back with happiness of loads of harvest and unforgettable memories.
For three years, with the support from different sides, you all included, my colleagues and I worked hard, and promoted the friendly relations between our consular district and China in many areas. I feel honored and proud to have my share on that.
——We safeguarded and developed the friendly cooperation between our consular district and China. Within half a year since taking office, I traveled throughout all 9 counties of our consular district, met with the councils, and visited schools, companies, and cultural institutions. I also received many guests and exchanged views on promoting relations in this house in the past 3 years. So far as I know, many councils in our consular district sent delegations to China, and received Chinese delegations as well. I think such meaningful official exchanges are very conducive to promote our bilateral friendly relations.
——We further expanded the spheres of cooperation between our consular district and China. In education, the number of Confucius Institutes in our consular district increased by 4 to 8. The University of Lancaster, the University of Leeds, the University of Newcastle, and the University of Edge Hill set up Confucius Institutes one after another. More primary schools and secondary schools opened Confucius Classrooms. All these greatly enriched the resources of Chinese studying for students in our consular district. The number of Chinese students increased to 45000 from 30000. Both the University of Manchester and the University of Liverpool have more than 3000 Chinese students. Each of the University of Sheffield, the University of York, etc., has more than 1000 Chinese students. The number of Chinese students in Salford University also increased. The number of visas that our Consulate General issued was always growing. I believe, with China developing and the cooperation between our consular district and China deepening, all the above figures will increase continuously.
——We promote Chinese culture more pro-actively. British Dragon Boat Race in the Dragon Boat Festival initiated by the Consulate General and organized by Xinhua Chinese Association has become the largest of its kind across Europe. Especially the race of this year. After being reported repeatedly by China Central Television around the globe, people in different corner of the world knew of the Salford Quay, saw the joyous scene of the British Chinese celebrating the Dragon Boat Festival, and heard the warm words of Mayor Ian Stewart.
——We figured out new methods to provide better consular service to Chinese students. In the past three years, we held lots of “Consular Service in Campus”, helping new Chinese students to reorient to campus life faster and easier. It has been a label of our Consulate General, which is warmly welcomed by the Chinese students and universities.
——We made lots of friends. Upon departure, what I regret to leave is only my work, but also my friends here. In the past 3 years, I received a lot of help from local councils, politicians, etc. Please accept my sincere thanks.
What I regret to leave also includes leaders of the Chinese community and Chinese compatriots.
——You care about the development of China, love your ancestral hometown, dedicate to trade and cultural exchanges between our consular district and China. Your devotion to China is admirable.
——You support and help each other, actively integrate into the local community, and quietly contribute to the social and economic development of the place you live in. Your efforts are confirmed by the local people. I visited many cities. Leaders of all cities speak high of the Chinese contributions to the diversity of their cities.
——You not only love the traditional Chinese culture, but also keen to inherit and disseminate it. The Chinese schools in our consular district are booming. The Spring Festival celebrations turn bigger each year. Especially the celebration in the Manchester Chinatown. It attracts more people than the derby match between Man Utd and Man City.
——You breathe as China breathes, and burden China’s burden. You care about “Project Hope” which is aimed at helping the schooling of the students with difficult backgrounds, and enthusiastically make donation and contribution to China’s disaster relieving efforts. You take pride in helping others. All your noble deeds are admirable.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I guess other Consul Generals here agree with me that, being diplomats, we work around the world, constantly taking or leaving postings, making or leaving friends. The beautiful time in Manchester is unforgettable. I am about to leave, but I feel uneasy to do so. Upon departure, I want to say that, no matter where I am, Manchester and our consular district will always take a special place in my memory. I will cherish dearly the deep friendship with you. I will also care about the development of this region, care about the cooperation and exchanges between here and China, and contribute my part to it. In a few days, new Chinese Consul General will come to take office. I hope all of you may support the new Consul General’s work and the Consulate General as always, and push forward the friendly cooperation and exchange between our consular district and China.
Thank you again for attending this reception. Thank you again for supporting me in the past 3 years.
Let us commonly wish the prosperity of China, the further development of China-UK relations, the new steps of exchanges and cooperation between our consular district and China.
May I wish you all good health, success, and happiness!