Remarks by H.E. Wang Yi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, at the 2018 New Year Reception
30 January 2018
Your Excellency Yang Jiechi, Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and State Councilor, and Madame Le Aimei,
Your Excellencies Ambassadors, Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Representatives of International Organizations and Your Spouses,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Let me begin by warmly welcoming all of you to the 2018 New Year Reception of the Chinese Foreign Ministry. It is a real delight to see so many friends, both old and new, on this joyful occasion where we will together look back at the past year and look forward to the new one.
Over the past year, Your Excellencies have contributed enormously to China’s growing friendship and cooperation with the rest of the world, while other Chinese government departments and local authorities have also given us valuable support for China’s diplomatic activities. On behalf of the Foreign Ministry, I wish to salute and thank all of you for your good efforts.
The year 2017 saw a renewed hope for world peace and growth amid volatility and transformation. There is a growing call for a world of greater security and stability achieved through cooperation and development.
The year 2017 also witnessed the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, which marked a new era in socialism with Chinese characteristics. At this Congress, a general goal was set for China’s diplomacy – to foster a new type of international relations and to build a community with a shared future for mankind; a two-stage blueprint for a modern socialist China was drawn up; and China’s commitment to working with other countries for a bright future was fully demonstrated.
Over the last year, under the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, China has made new progress on the diplomatic front. We have adapted to new development challenges at home and to an evolving global landscape. With a strong sense of mission, we have served the Chinese dream of national rejuvenation. In a pioneering spirit, we have contributed to the world dream of lasting peace and shared prosperity.
We have forged greater synergy for the Belt and Road Initiative. The first Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation yielded over 270 outcomes and facilitated a number of major cooperation projects, creating a strong momentum of extensive participation from around the world. Today, the Belt and Road has become the biggest platform for international cooperation and a most welcomed international public good.
We have made great efforts to steer globalization in the right direction. On various occasions from Davos to Geneva, and from Hamburg to Da Nang, President Xi Jinping presented to the world China’s vision of greater balance in economic globalization and of a community with a shared future for mankind. He also elaborated on China’s proposals for an open world economy and for greater economic integration in the Asia Pacific. Those remarks instilled confidence and positive energy into the international community.
We have explored more avenues to advance our mutually beneficial relations with other countries. New progress has been made in our coordination and cooperation with other major countries like the United States and Russia and with the European Union. Our mutual trust and cooperation with our neighbors has been strengthened, and more substance has been added to our partnerships with other developing countries. China’s preference for dialogue and partnership over confrontation and alliance has created greater resonance, which opens up exciting possibilities for this new approach to state-to-state relations.
We have initiated a new model for BRICS cooperation. At their Summit in Xiamen, BRICS leaders decided to forge a closer, broader and more comprehensive strategic partnership and to further upgrade BRICS cooperation. The new “BRICS plus” approach adopted at the Summit will turn BRICS into a new platform for South-South cooperation with global influence.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
One hundred and twenty years ago, in a China that was poor and weak from domestic turmoil and foreign aggression, some dedicated patriots pushed for a “Hundred Days’ Reform”. They tried but eventually failed to find a way to national rejuvenation and prosperity. Today, 120 years on, China has not only found its path of socialism with Chinese characteristics but also achieved a remarkable transformation – it has stood up, grown rich and is becoming strong. A sea change has taken place in China, which represents new opportunities for the peace and development of the world.
The year 2018 marks the 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening-up policy and the first year following the 19th CPC National Congress. We will follow the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, stay committed to peaceful development and make new progress in major country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics.
In 2018, we look forward to a world of greater openness and less isolation. The green shoots in the new round of global growth must be nurtured by all countries. What China has learnt in its 40 years of reform and opening-up is that prosperity only comes to those who embrace the world with open arms. China will remain committed to opening up as a fundamental policy to a mutually beneficial strategy. We will stay actively engaged in reforming and developing the global governance system to make economic globalization more open, inclusive and balanced so that its benefits can be shared by all. We will work on the Belt and Road Initiative by implementing deliverables of the first Forum and starting preparations for the second one. This way, we can break new ground in opening up. We will host a number of events like the annual conference of the Boao Forum for Asia, the Summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, and the China International Import Expo to add momentum to the trend of openness and development.
In 2018, we look forward to a world of more cooperation and less friction. China will expand its global network of partnerships and build a framework for major country relations featuring overall stability and balanced development. With regard to our relations with neighbors, we will follow the principles of amity, sincerity, mutual benefit and inclusiveness. We will broaden cooperation and narrow differences with them to jointly build a community of shared future in Asia. We will uphold justice while pursuing shared interests for greater solidarity and cooperation with other developing countries. We will add new dimensions to our cooperation mechanisms with Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Arab countries to keep the mechanisms vibrant in changing circumstances. Such efforts will enable us to set an example for a new type of international relations.
In 2018, we look forward to a world of more trust and less estrangement. To navigate the complicated international landscape, countries need to have more mutual trust and less suspicion. Efforts must be made to find political solutions to long-running hotspots and thorny issues and bring about outcomes that will benefit all parties. The current momentum of easing tensions on the Korean Peninsula presents all parties with an opportunity to demonstrate greater sincerity for dialogue and negotiation and to facilitate more good interactions. To put it more broadly, as a partner that all sides can count on, China will continue to uphold the equality of countries, regardless of their size, strength and wealth, stand for dialogue and consultation as the only approach to disputes and differences, support political settlement to regional hotspots and act constructively to that end. It is our sincere hope that dialogue and cooperation will prevail in our world.
Given the fact that China is still the world’s largest developing country, serving development at home has therefore remained the top priority in China’s diplomatic agenda. We will act upon the new development philosophy, present Chinese provinces, regions and cities to the world under the theme of “China in the New Era”, and serve the coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the planning and development of the Xiongan New Area and the 2022 Winter Olympics. We will explore a mechanism for protecting the safety and security of Chinese nationals abroad to effectively safeguard our legitimate rights and interests.
Ladies and gentlemen,
To celebrate the arrival of spring is a tradition shared by people of many ethnicities around the world. As we celebrate the forthcoming spring, we want to express our hope for a bright future of greater happiness and prosperity. In the new year, we look forward to continued communication and cooperation with you and to mutual support and coordination with other departments and local governments. Let us work together to take China’s friendship and cooperation with other countries to a new level and bring more benefits to the Chinese and other peoples.
Now, please join me in a toast:
To the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation,
To the peace and development of the world,
To the friendship between the Chinese and other peoples, and
To the health and happiness of all the distinguished guests present.