Hon. Ms Jenny Salesa, Minister of Ethnic Communities,
Respected Members of NZ Parliament, Mr. Raymond Huo, Dr. Jian Yang, and Ms. Melissa Lee,
Respected Auckland City Councilors Mr. Mike Lee and Mr. Paul Young,
President of ACCC Mr. Kai Luey,
My dear Chinese compatriots,
Ladies and gentlemen, friends,
I am very pleased to join so many distinguished guests and dear friends today in celebration of the 69th birthday of the People's Republic of China and very happy to attend the flags raising ceremony here at ACCC. First of all, I would like to thank the Auckland Chinese Community Center for inviting me and my colleagues here, and for organizing this fabulous and meaningful event every year. Also, on behalf of the Chinese Consulate General in Auckland, I would like to thank all my friends and Chinese compatriots here and all over New Zealand for your great support and valuable contribution to the development of China and New Zealand relationship.
Over the past 69 years, particularly over the past 40 years of China's reform and opening-up, earth shaking changes have taken place in China at all aspects with people's living standard greatly improved and international position significantly increased. China, once a poor nation and scarred from humiliation of foreign aggression and civil war, has stood up, got rich and is getting strong. China has become the No.2 economy in the world and made great contribution to the course of progress and development for mankind. Now the Chinese people are striving to reach the goal set by the 19th Party Congress to build China into a modern socialist country which is strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious, clean and beautiful by the middle of this century. To reach this goal, we need a peaceful international environment. China will continue to be the keeper of the world peace, contributor of the world growth and defender of the world order. We will continue further reform and opening up and is dedicated to working together with other countries to build a community with shared future for mankind. We are confident our goal will be reached on time and China's stability and development will bring more and more great opportunities to the whole world including NZ.
Over the past years particularly since President Xi Jinping's state visit to NZ in 2014 when the bilateral relationship was upgraded into comprehensive strategic partnership, our cooperation has been growing very fast at all areas. For many years, China has remained as New Zealand's largest trading partner, the biggest source of international students and the second largest source of tourists. The cooperation under Belt and Road initiative has achieved many early harvests in New Zealand, particularly in areas of aviation, ocean shipping, tourist related infrastructure, and financial integration. It is believed that both sides will benefit from the fast growing pragmatic cooperation in the fields of primary industry, aviation interconnection, innovation, tourism, education and others. Both sides also have common interests in maintaining an open global economy, free trade system and multilateralism. We are faced with great opportunities in furthering our bilateral cooperation.
The above mentioned achievements could not be accomplished without the joint efforts of 60 million overseas Chinese compatriots including our compatriots here in New Zealand and the members of the Auckland Chinese Community Center, who have been dedicated to host this flag raising ceremony for many years. As great contributors to the economic and social development as well as to the diversity of culture of New Zealand, you have served as important bridges in promotion of mutual understanding, friendship and economic cooperation between our two countries and two peoples. I want to take this opportunity to express my appreciation to all of you for the important role you have played in this endeavor, and in supporting the process of peaceful unification of our Motherland. It is my sincere hope that all the Chinese compatriots will continue to stay in harmony with each other and have even better interactions and connections with the local mainstream society and make more contribution to building the Belt and Road between our two countries and two peoples.
Thank you all again for your best wishes for a brighter future of China and a stronger relationship between our two countries and two peoples. I wish this function a great success and all of you a very happy afternoon.