Remarks by Ambassador Zhou Pingjian at the Embassy
reception on the occasion of the 74th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China
( Nairobi, September 27, 2023 )
Honorable Prime Cabinet Secretary Dr. Musalia Mudavadi,
Honorable Principal Secretary for Foreign Affairs Dr. Korir SingOei,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Welcome to the Chinese Embassy. We are deeply honored that you have come to join us in celebrating the 74th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. I would like to express heartfelt appreciation to all those who have long cared for China and supported the China-Kenya relations.
74 years ago, when new China was founded on October 1st ,1949, life expectancy in China was around 35 years. Now it rises to over 78 years. China has built the largest education, social security, and healthcare systems in the world.
74 years ago, China did not have the capacity to manufacture even a tractor. Today China’s manufacturing sector is the largest in the world. China has remained the world’s second largest economy since 2010. In the first six months of this year, China exported 2.14 million cars. China is expected to become the world’s biggest automobile exporter in 2023.
In a short span of several decades, China has accomplished what took developed countries hundreds of years to accomplish. The key to China’s rapid economic development and long-term social stability lies in the path we take. Working under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC), the resilient and assiduous Chinese people have blazed a trail of socialism with Chinese characteristics and embarked on an epic journey toward national rejuvenation.
Following the 18th CPC National Congress, socialism with Chinese characteristics entered a new era. With the historic achievements and changes for more than a decade in the new era, the Chinese nation has achieved the tremendous transformation from standing up and growing prosperous to becoming strong, and China’s national rejuvenation has become an unstoppable process.
The 20th CPC National Congress was convened last October. We have adopted a two-step strategic plan to build China into a great modern socialist country in all respects by the middle of this century. Today, we are closer, more confident, and more capable than ever of reaching the goal of rejuvenating the Chinese nation. No force can ever stop the Chinese people and the Chinese nation from marching forward.
Since the beginning of this year, China’s economy has continued to recover on a generally sound track of rebound. In the first half of this year, China’s GDP grew by 5.5% year on year, notably faster than last year’s 3%. The IMF predicted that China’s economy will grow by 5.2% this year and contribute one third of the global growth. China’s economy will remain a major engine for the global economy.
China enjoys several distinct advantages: a socialist market economy in systemic terms, a super-size market in terms of demand, a full-fledged industrial system in terms of supply, and, abundant, high-caliber labor force and entrepreneurs in terms of human resources. The strong resilience, ample potential and strong vitality of the Chinese economy and the fundamentals sustaining China’s sound economic growth in the long run stay unchanged. We are confident and capable of promoting the sustained development of the economy and providing new opportunities for world development as we make new progress in Chinese modernization.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Yesterday, China released a white paper titled “A Global Community of Shared Future: China’s Proposals and Actions.” The idea of building a global community of shared future, was propounded by president Xi Jinping ten years ago. It answers a question raised by the world, by history, and by the times: “Where is humanity headed?” His Proposal lights the path forward as the world fumbles for solutions, and represents China’s contribution to global efforts to protect our shared home and create a better future of prosperity for all.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Over the past decade, China has contributed its strength to building a global community of shared future with firm conviction and solid actions.
The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a vivid example of building a global community of shared future. The BRI originated in China, but the opportunities and achievements it creates belong to the whole world. Over the past decade, the BRI, focusing on connectivity as the main theme, has provided a new platform for international economic cooperation and added fresh impetus to participating countries’ development and world economic growth. It has become a popular global public good and international cooperation platform.
Next month, the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation will be held in Beijing. The forum is not only the highlight in commemorate events to mark BRI’s 10th anniversary, but also an important platform for all partners to plan high-quality Belt and Road cooperation.
China will continue to act in the principle of shared growth through discussion and collaboration, and pursue open, green, and clean cooperation under the BRI. We will continue to follow a high-standard, people-centered, and sustainable approach to promote high-quality Belt and Road cooperation with partner countries.
Kenya is an important partner in Belt and Road cooperation. Our fruitful cooperation stands out in China-Africa cooperation. Kenya actively participated in the first Belt and Road Forum in 2017 and the second in 2019. It is my belief that Kenya will continue to make significant contribution to the BRI by actively participating in the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the establishment of China-Kenya diplomatic relations. Over the past 60 years, China and Kenya have treated each other as equals, supported each other, pursed revitalization through solidarity, and have been good friends with political mutual trust and good partners with economic win-win cooperation. Under the strategic guidance of President Xi and President Ruto, China-Kenya relations have sustained strong momentum for growth and opened a new chapter of China-Kenya friendship and cooperation.
China views and grows China-Kenya relations from a strategic height. Guided by the principles of sincerity, real results, affinity, and good faith and with a commitment to the greater good and shared benefits, China endeavors to strengthen solidarity and cooperation with Kenya.
China firmly supports Kenya in safeguarding sovereign independence and national dignity, supports Kenya in following a development path suited to its national conditions, and supports Kenya in playing a greater role in regional and international affairs.
China is ready to work with Kenya to jointly act on multilateralism, defend the central role of the United Nations in international affairs and the common interests of developing countries, advance the implementation of the Outlook on Peace and Development in the Horn of Africa, and safeguard regional peace and development.
As the largest developing country in the world, China is a natural member of the Global South. China breathes the same breath with other developing countries and shares the same future with them. No matter how strong it may grow, China will always see in Africa a tried and tested friend.
China stands ready to work with Kenya to take the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries as a new starting point to deepen traditional friendship, align both countries’ strategies for revitalization, and strengthen win-win cooperation. China is committed to putting into action the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative and the Global Civilization Initiative. China is committed to implementing the outcomes of the Belt and Road Forum, the FOCAC meetings and the China-Africa Leader’s Dialogue. Together, we will bring the China-Kenya comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership to a new level in the new era and deliver greater benefits to the people of both countries.
In conclusion, I would like to propose a toast,
To peace and prosperity of China and Kenya,
To China-Kenya friendship and cooperation,
To good health of all friends here and you family,