坚定信心 携手前行 共创未来
Stay Confident and Work Together for a Shared Future
– Speech at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting
H.E. Wang Qishan, Vice President of the People’s Republic of China
Davos, Switzerland, 23 January 2019
Dear Dr. Klaus Schwab,
Ladies and gentlemen,
It gives me great pleasure to attend the 2019 World Economic Forum Annual Meeting.
This year is the 40th anniversary of the relations between China and the WEF. Over the past four decades, Davos, this lovely small town with its unique appeal, has become an important platform for China to learn about the world, exchange views, state its position and seek common understanding.
This year 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. The past seven decades have witnessed remarkable achievements in China’s development. Our nation has made historical transformation in terms of social productivity and composite national strength and delivered initial prosperity to its people who were once struggling to meet their basic living needs. China’s status and influence have risen as never before. Indeed, China has increasingly become an important force for upholding world peace and promoting common development.
Many foreign friends have often put this question to me: What has made it possible for China to achieve so much in development and progress? And how will a stronger China engage the rest of the world? Well, these questions can be answered from historical, cultural and philosophical perspectives. Given the close linkage between the past, the present and the future, one needs to learn about China’s past in order to understand its present and forecast its future.
China has an uninterrupted civilization of more than 5,000 years, and the Chinese nation has both gone through sufferings and made splendid achievements. When the West embarked upon industrialization and embraced the oceans, China fell behind because its emperors chose to shut China’s door to the world, and this made China a victim of foreign aggression. Since modern times began, China was beset by crises at home and abroad, and ravaged by wars and chaos, which inflicted untold sufferings to its people. However, in a century of darkness, the Chinese people, rising one upon another in an unyielding spirit, never stopped searching for a way towards national renewal and prosperity.
Seventy years ago, the Communist Party of China, rallying the Chinese people around itself, engaged in an indomitable struggle and succeeded in establishing a New China in the ruins of an old semi-colonial and semi-feudal society, thus achieving national independence and liberation of the Chinese people. Since then, the Chinese nation has gained rebirth and entered a new era of development.
We will stay true to the founding mission of the Communist Party of China, uphold its leadership and China’s fundamental socialist political and economic systems and be guided by a people-centered development philosophy. From the founding and building of the People’s Republic to the launching of the reform and opening-up program and the shifting of focus to economic development, we have moved away from revolution to reform, from a planned economy to a market economy and from isolation to all-round opening-up. In this process, we have broken free from the fetters of dogma and Utopian thinking, freed our minds and taken a realistic and pragmatic approach, and applied Marxism’s basic tenets in the context of China’s realities. Four to five generations of us Chinese have, going through twists and turns, probed a way forward. Through trials and errors, with many lessons learned and heavy prices paid along the way, we have made great accomplishments and embarked upon a path of building socialism with distinctive Chinese features. Thanks to 70 years of hard work and dedication, we have turned a weak and impoverished agrarian country with backward productivity into the world’s second largest economy, the largest industrial manufacturer, and the largest trader of goods, creating bright prospects for the great renewal of the Chinese nation.
This is what history has told us:
– The Chinese nation, long among the leading civilizations in the world history, has made unique and significant contribution to human progress. The profound historical and cultural heritage of the Chinese nation is in the genes of its people. What we long for is to see China once again gain its rightful place among the nations of the world and achieve great rejuvenation.
– The Chinese nation as we know today originates from a number of nationalities that embraced and integrated into one another throughout history. We are a peace-loving, open and inclusive nation that keeps abreast of the times. While keeping the fine Chinese culture alive and strong, we also respect other civilizations and values, and draw inspirations from other cultures. As we continue to follow the socialist path with distinctive Chinese features, we will respect other peoples’ independent choices of paths and systems.
– The Chinese culture values the teachings that one should help others to succeed while seeking one’s own success, create a world for all, treat others with respect and pursue win-win cooperation. We reject the practices of the strong bullying the weak and self-claimed supremacy. Today, China’s interests and future are closely linked to those of the world. While developing itself, China also wishes to work with all countries for common development and a community with a shared future for mankind.
– The advances in China in the past 70 years are not a godsend, nor a gift from others. Rather, they are made by the Chinese people through vision, hard work, courage, reform and innovation. By striving to meet people’s aspirations for a better life, we can surely win their support. United as one, we Chinese can surely overcome various risks and challenges.
– A land of over 9.6 million square kilometers, a people of nearly 1.4 billion, and a history of over 5,000 years: These are the underlying features of China, and they are the source from which China derives confidence in its path, theory, system and culture. We have embarked on a right path that fits China’s conditions and is in keeping with the trend of the times. And we will further improve and enrich socialism with distinctive Chinese features through reform and opening-up. This is a path we believe in, and we will steadily forge ahead along this path.