Your Excellencies Ambassadors,
Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Representatives of International Organizations,
As a Chinese poem reads, “Plum blossoms in winter signal the arrival of spring for all things.” The Spring Festival is just around the corner. On behalf of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, I would like to convey to you, your families and your colleagues our sincere greetings and best wishes for the Chinese New Year.
The year 2022 was truly eventful for both China and the world. The once-in-a-century pandemic was compounded by the rise of geopolitical conflict. Decades of gains in global development were eroded. Food and energy security were disrupted. Some country engaged in hegemonic, domineering and bullying practices, stoked ideological and bloc confrontation, and pushed the world to the edge of division and conflict. On the other hand, it is encouraging to see that people in all countries demonstrated a stronger desire for peace, development and cooperation, a firmer resolve to uphold independence and seek strength in unity, and greater determination to create a better future with joint efforts. Given the shared aspiration of the people and the prevailing trend of the times, the future of humankind will be promising.
In 2022, the Communist Party of China (CPC) successfully convened its 20th National Congress. It drew up an ambitious blueprint for advancing the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernization, set out China’s foreign policy goal of safeguarding world peace and promoting common development, and reaffirmed China’s commitment to building a community with a shared future for mankind. With a global vision and a strong sense of responsibility, China’s diplomacy made new contributions to the noble cause of peace and development for humanity.
Over the past year, China’s head-of-state diplomacy was immensely successful, providing guidance and impetus to greater solidarity and cooperation. The snowflake-shaped cauldron at the Beijing Winter Olympics symbolized the unity of the family of nations. The Global Security Initiative and the Global Development Initiative helped forge stronger global consensus and synergy. The three overseas visits made by President Xi Jinping gathered international support for delivering the vision of a community with a shared future, and steered the ship of global cooperation through heavy seas and toward a bright future.
Over the past year, China’s opening-up and cooperation deepened, providing a strong boost to global recovery. With the expansion of the Belt and Road family, 151 countries and 32 international organizations have joined in this global enterprise to build a belt of prosperity and a road to happiness. The High-level Dialogue on Global Development was successfully held. And the official launch of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), covering the world’s largest free trade area, created a stronger engine for the global economy. The fifth China International Import Expo attracted a huge turnout. Inbound foreign investment bucked the trend and continued to grow. China, with its door wide open, shared great opportunities with all countries.
Over the past year, China fulfilled its responsibilities for global governance and firmly defended the international order. We pushed for the adoption of the new biodiversity framework and achieved steady progress toward the goals of carbon peaking and carbon neutrality, making every effort to protect planet Earth, our common home. We kept to the direction of promoting peace talks in complex crises and contributed the largest share of debt service suspension among G20 countries, making every effort to tackle common challenges. We firmly rejected hegemonism and power politics, and opposed zero-sum mentality and a new Cold War, making every effort to uphold true multilateralism.
In 2022, members of the diplomatic corps worked tirelessly to build bridges of communication and understanding, and strengthened the bond of mutually beneficial cooperation between China and the rest of the world. I wish to extend my sincere appreciation to you all.
The year 2023 marks the beginning of the full implementation of the guiding principles laid out at the 20th CPC National Congress. The Chinese people are embarking on a new journey with full confidence to build China into a modern socialist country in all respects. We in the diplomatic service will keep to the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Diplomacy and stand firmly on the right side of history and on the side of human progress. We will deepen friendship and cooperation with all countries to jointly make new and greater contributions to world peace and prosperity.
In 2023, we look forward to a more peaceful and stable world free from war and conflict. Peace, like air and sunshine, is hardly noticeable when we benefit from it. But none of us can live without it. Preserving peace requires the concerted efforts of us all. China will remain committed to an independent foreign policy of peace and to the path of peaceful development. China’s development will always be a boost to the force for peace in the world. We call on all countries to pursue common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security, resolve conflicts and disputes through negotiation and consultation, and support all efforts that are conducive to peaceful settlement of crises, to light up the world with the sunshine of peace.
In 2023, we look forward to a more united and cooperative world free from fragmentation and confrontation. Humanity sharing a common future is an indisputable reality, and solidarity and cooperation is the only viable path toward a brighter future. China will deepen and expand equal, open and cooperative partnerships, promote coordination and sound interactions among major countries, enhance friendship, mutual trust and convergence of interests with neighboring countries, and strengthen unity and friendship with fellow developing countries. China encourages the international community to foster a collective sense of unity, intensify cooperation as an underlying trend, and reject the outdated Cold War mentality and the pursuit of exclusive circles. We need to pool our wisdom and strength to deliver greater benefits to people across the world.
In 2023, we look forward to a more open and integrated world free from seclusion and isolation. Openness brings progress while seclusion leads to regression. It is impossible to channel the water in the ocean of the world economy back into isolated creeks and lakes. China will remain firm in advancing high-level opening-up and fostering the new development paradigm at a faster pace, continuing to provide the world with new opportunities with its new progress. This year marks the tenth anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) proposed by President Xi Jinping. Thanks to the joint efforts of all participants, the BRI has become a sunshine boulevard that connects roads, promotes mutual benefit and brings hearts closer. We wish to work with all parties to review past achievements and draw up the blueprint for a new decade of Belt and Road cooperation.
In 2023, we look forward to a more prosperous world with greater development, free from wider gaps between North and South. It is neither fair nor sustainable if the poor are made poorer while the rich become richer. The fruits of development should benefit more people across countries in a more equitable way. The Chinese path to modernization offers a new option for the modernization of humanity, and China will contribute more ideas and strength to making global development more balanced, coordinated and inclusive. We will continue to support the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, promote a global development partnership, and support fellow developing countries in enhancing their own capacity for development. We also hope that developed countries will honor their commitments and meet their responsibilities. No country or individual should be left behind on the journey of common development.
We will soon bid farewell to the Year of the Tiger and usher in the Year of the Rabbit. In Chinese culture, rabbit symbolizes kindness, intelligence and vitality, and the Year of the Rabbit is a year of hope. In the new year, we stand ready to work with all of you to take China’s friendship and cooperation with your countries to a new height and write a new chapter of world peace and development and human progress.