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Remarks by Ambassador WU Xi at the Wellington-Beijing 15 Year Sister City Celebration Function

H.E. Wu Xi, Chinese Ambassador to New Zealand

Te Papa, 1 February 2021


Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tātou kātoa

Respected Mayor Andy Foster,



Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is my great pleasure to address the Wellington-Beijing 15 Year Sister City Celebration Function. I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Wellington City Council and the People's Government of Beijing Municipality, for organizing this celebration.

Both Beijing and Wellington are unique in political status, rich in cultural heritage, and remain centres of finance, service industry and education. By establishing the sister city relationship in 2006, the two cities have made full use of the platform for mutually beneficial cooperation.

During the past 15 years, we have seen the completion of the New Zealand Agriculture Park in Beijing, the cooperation between the two cities on carbon emission reduction and energy conservation, and the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on the Extension of the Runway at Wellington Airport. During the past 15 years, the Beijing Cultural Festival and Beijing TV Week have also been held in Wellington. Wellington has participated in the Beijing International Art Biennial, and the two cities have conducted exchanges in arts, sports, film, television and other cultural fields.

During the outbreak of the COVID-19, the people of the two cities have worked together and supported each other with understanding, respect, and trust, and have made notable progress in the control and prevention of the spread of the virus.

For decades, sister cities have served as a bridge of communication between China and New Zealand through promoting practical cooperation in various fields and complementing each other’s comparative advantages. To date, China has set up about 40 friendship-province or city relations with New Zealand. I believe that there are more cities in both countries willing to promote friendship and cooperation with each other, and I expect more sister city relationships will be established.

2021 is a special year for China. It marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China, and China will embark on a new journey to fully build a modern socialist country.

Just as President Xi Jinping remarked in his address at the World Economic Forum Virtual Event of the Davos Agenda, as China enters a new development stage, we will follow a new development philosophy and foster a new development paradigm with domestic circulation as the mainstay and domestic and international circulations reinforcing each other. China will work with other countries to build an open, inclusive, clean and beautiful world that enjoys lasting peace, universal security and common prosperity. China will continue to take an active part in international cooperation on COVID-19, implement a win-win strategy of opening-up, promote sustainable development, advance science, technology and innovation, and promote a new type of international relations.

China is ready to work together with New Zealand to implement the important consensus reached between our leaders, continue to uphold the spirit of "striving to be the first" and pursue greater development of bilateral relations in the new era. The sound development of China-New Zealand relations will surely benefit the two peoples, provide momentum to the sister city relations, and boost the friendship between the cities of Beijing and Wellington.

We will soon welcome the Chinese Lunar New Year, the year of the Ox. As we ring in the new year, we shall work together and open up new prospects. Just like the Chinese proverb goes, “if ten thousand people aim their bows at the same goal, it is impossible to miss it (万人操弓,共射一招,招无不中)”. As long as we join hands, we will surely write a new chapter of win-win cooperation between China and New Zealand.

To conclude, I wish the Wellington-Beijing 15 Year Sister City Celebrations a complete success, and wish all of you health and good luck in the Year of Ox! Thank you!

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