NCP leader Andy Brooks joined Government ministers, academics and members of the business community celebrating China’s National Day in London on Tuesday. The Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond and Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, whose wife is Chinese, were amongst the guests, which also included General Sir Christopher Deverell and members of London’s diplomatic corps, at a reception at the Langham Hotel in London’s West End to mark the 67th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China.
Chinese Ambassador Liu Xiaoming opened the formal part of the celebrations with a welcome speech that covered the growing links between China and Britain over the years. He said: “… a great deal can happen in six years and a great deal can be achieved. Over the past six years China has made tremendous progress both at home and in its ties with the world.
“We have put forward the ‘two centenary goals’ aimed at building the ‘Chinese Dream’.
“The first centenary goal is to build China into a moderately prosperous society by 2021. That will be the year when the Communist Party of China marks its 100th anniversary.
“The second centenary goal is to build China into a modern, socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced and harmonious. The aim is to achieve this target by 2049. That is the time to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic.
“In order to achieve these goals, we have laid out the Four-pronged Comprehensive Strategy. This includes building moderate prosperity in all respects; deepening all-round reform; advancing the rule of law in every aspect; and strengthening all-round Party discipline”.
Comrade Liu Xiaoming talked about the key concepts of the current Five Year Plan, which were: innovation; balanced growth; a green economy; continued opening-up; and inclusive development – adding that the “implementation of the 13th Five Year Plan will ensure the continued strong growth of China's economy.”
On the world arena, the Chinese ambassador said: “Earlier this month China successfully hosted the G20 Summit in Hangzhou. The summit focused on moving towards an innovative, invigorated, interconnected and inclusive world economy. This was the latest example of a Chinese solution and Chinese wisdom for addressing the challenges in the global economy. This was China's contribution to the global efforts aimed at a strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth of the world economy”.
Liu Xiaoming also spoke about the deepening relations between London and Beijing. “In the past six years, remarkable achievements have also been made in China–UK relations. The ties between our two great nations have been constantly upgraded. The ‘Super State Visit’ to the UK by President Xi Jinping last October marked a significant milestone. During that visit our two countries decided jointly to build a global comprehensive strategic partnership for the 21st century. Together we unveiled a ‘Golden Era’ of China–UK relations.”
“Despite the unexpected changes following the Brexit referendum and British government reshuffle, the vital interests that bond our two countries together, and the fundamentals of China–UK relations, have remained unchanged.
“I am pleased to see that Prime Minister May attended the G20 Summit in Hangzhou and had a successful bilateral meeting with President Xi.
“The leaders of our two countries reaffirmed the ‘Golden Era’ for the China–UK relationship and reiterated the shared commitment to bringing our global comprehensive strategic partnership to a higher level.
“I am also glad that just days ago the British government approved the Hinkley Point project and reaffirmed its welcome to Chinese investment in the UK.
“I am equally glad that Chinese businesses have maintained enthusiasm to do business here in the UK despite the Brexit referendum. They have cast their vote of confidence with continued investments and contracts.”
The Ambassador highlighted the developing dialogue between Britain and China on a whole host of political, economic and cultural issues.
"If two people are of the same mind, their strength can cut through metal and their consensus-based argument is as appealing as the fragrance of orchid flowers.
“This is an ancient Chinese quote praising the power of co-operation and concerted efforts. As President Xi said, China and the UK are permanent members of the UN Security Council and important members of the G20 and other international organisations. Stronger and closer co-operation between our two countries not only benefits our two peoples, but also serves the interests of world peace and development.
“Next year will mark the 45th anniversary of the establishment of ambassadorial-level diplomatic ties between China and the UK. This will be a time to review the past experience. This will also be an opportunity to create even deeper foundations upon which the future of our relations will be built.
“China stands ready to work with Britain to increase further our political mutual trust; to deepen our exchanges and co-operation across the board; to consolidate the China–UK global comprehensive strategic partnership in the ‘Golden Era. And together we can make a success of it!”