Work Together to Build a Community of Shared Future for Mankind
– Speech at the United Nations Office at Geneva
H.E. Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China
Geneva, 18 January 2017
Your Excellency Mr. Peter Thomson, President of the 71st Session of the UN General Assembly,
Your Excellency Mr. António Guterres, UN Secretary-General,
Your Excellency Mr. Michael Møller, Director-General of the UN Office at Geneva,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
As a new year begins, everything takes on a new look, and it gives me great pleasure to visit the United Nations Office at Geneva and discuss with you the building of a community of shared future for mankind, which is the call of our time.
I just attended the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting. In Davos, many speakers pointed out in their speeches that today’s world is full of uncertainties and that people long for a bright future but are bewildered about what will come. What has happened to the world and how should we respond? The whole world is reflecting on this question, and it is also very much on my mind.
I believe that to answer this question, we need to get clear about a fundamental issue: Where did we come from? Where are we now? And where are we going?
Over the past century and more, mankind has gone through bloody hot wars and the chilling Cold War, but also achieved remarkable development and huge progress. In the first half of last century, mankind suffered the scourges of two world wars, and the people yearned for the end of war and the advent of peace. In the 1950s and 1960s, people in colonies awakened and fought to shake off shackles and achieve independence. Since the end of the Cold War, people have pursued a shared aspiration, namely, to expand cooperation and promote common development.
Peace and development: this has been the aspiration held dear by mankind over the past century. However, the goal to achieve peace and development is far from being met. We need to respond to the people’s call, take up the baton of history and forge ahead on the marathon track toward peace and development.
Mankind is in an era of major development as well as profound transformation and change. The trend toward multi-polarity and economic globalization is surging. IT application in social development and cultural diversity are making continued progress. A new round of scientific and industrial revolution is in the making. Interconnection and interdependence between countries are crucial for human survival. The forces for peace far outweigh factors causing war, and the trend of our times toward peace, development, cooperation and win-win outcomes has gained stronger momentum.
On the other hand, mankind is also in an era of numerous challenges and increasing risks. Global growth is sluggish, the impact of the financial crisis lingers on and the development gap is widening. Armed conflicts occur from time to time, Cold War mentality and power politics still exist and non-conventional security threats, particularly terrorism, refugee crisis, major communicable diseases and climate change, are spreading.
There is only one Earth in the universe and we mankind have only one homeland. Stephen Hawking has raised the proposition about “parallel universe”, hoping to find another place in the universe where mankind could live. We do not know when his wish will come true. Until today, Earth is still the only home to mankind, so to care for and cherish it is the only option for us mankind. There is a Latin motto inscribed in the dome of the Federal Palace of Switzerland which says “Unus pro omnibus, omnes pro uno” (One for all, and all for one). We should not only think about our own generation, but also take responsibility for future ones.