It gives me great pleasure to attend the banquet. On behalf of the Chinese Embassy in Australia, I would like to express our heartfelt thanks and warm greetings to all the Chinese communities in Australia and friends for participating in and supporting this event.
At this historic moment to celebrate the 50 anniversary of China-Australia Relations, I would like to begin by paying tribute to Mr Whitlam, the founder of Australia-China diplomatic relationship. He was the first Australian MP to publicly propose to recognise PRC, the first Australian political party leader to visit China, and the first Australian Prime Minister to make the decision to establish diplomatic relations with China and to visit China in that capacity. He propose that Australia should establish and develop diplomatic relations with China based on the principle of friendship, and this proposal of his on China-Australia relations is still relevant today.
Over the past 50 years, China and Australia have interacted frequently in various fields at all levels, and have achieved outstanding results through friendly and practical cooperation. Particularly in the last decade, our relationship has gained momentum and has been elevated to a comprehensive strategic partnership. China has remained Australia’s largest trading partner for 7 consecutive years, and are also Australia’s largest source of overseas tourists and tourism spending, as well as the most important source of international students. Australia is also an important trading partner and source of foreign investment for China. Besides, the exchanges and the development of sister provinces/states relations, including New South Wales have continued to bear fruit, making great contributions to China-Australia relations, which fully demonstrates that the nature of China-Australia relations is mutual benefit and win-win, bringing practical benefit to both countries’ people.
Since the new Australian Government came to power this May, a possible opportunity to reset the China-Australia relations has emerged. Leaders of our two countries made effected communication and contacting, resulting in important consensus. This created a good opening for the well developing of mutual relations in the future. We hope that both sides can take concrete actions and work in the same direction based on the principle of mutual respect and mutual benefit to bring China-Australia relations back on the right track in near future.
The Chinese migration to Australia has a history of over two centuries. 1.2 million overseas Chinese have been working hard and actively integrating into this society, and have made important contributions to Australia’s economic and social development, as well as the enrichment of its multicultural society. They have also played a unique role in promoting economic, cultural and people-to-people exchanges between China and Australia. The development and achievements of our bilateral relations over the past 50 years would have been impossible without the active participation and unique contributions of the Chinese community in Australia. Today’s celebration also fully reflects the good wishes of the Chinese communities in Australia for the healthy and stable development of China-Australia relations.
Last month, the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China successfully concluded. The national congress comprehensively elaborates the work of the past 5 years and the great transformation over the past 10 years of the new era. Task objectives and policy guidelines of the Party and the country for the next 5 years and beyond are designed. Blueprints of Chinese people of all ethnic groups building a strong socialist modern country and achieve the Second Centenary Goal under the Party’s leadership are drawn. The central task to promote the great national rejuvenation through a Chinese path to modernization is mapped out.
China will always adhere to the foreign policy of maintaining world peace and promoting common development. China is committed to building a community with a shared future for mankind, and developing mutually beneficial and friendly relations with other countries in the world, which provides important opportunity for China-Australia relations. China is ready to work together with Australia to promote a stable and sustained comprehensive strategic partnership in the long run. We hope that the Chinese community in Australia will continue to play a bridging role and make positive contributions to the development of China-Australia relations.
The 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Australia is of special significance to both China and Australia. We expect that both countries can take this as an opportunity and work together to welcome a brighter future for bilateral relations!