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Openness for Greater Prosperity, Innovation for a Better Future

By An Baijie | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2018-04-10 13:53

Today, the Chinese people can say with great pride that reform and opening-up, China's second revolution if you like, has not only profoundly changed the country but also greatly influenced the whole world.

An ancient Chinese classic teaches that heaven has its own law and those who embrace it will prosper. China's reform and opening-up meets its people's aspiration for development, innovation and a better life. It also meets the global trend toward development, cooperation and peace. As such, China's reform and opening-up can and will be a great success!

Four decades of reform and opening-up has given us many valuable inspirations. The most important one is that for any country or nation to achieve rejuvenation, they must follow the logic of history and the trend of the times in their pursuit of progress and development.

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Friends,

The world is undergoing a new round of major development, great change and profound readjustment. Humankind still faces many instabilities and uncertainties. The new round of technological and industrial revolution brings fresh opportunities and presents unprecedented challenges. In some countries and regions, people are still living in the shadow of war and conflict. A great many people, including the old, women and children, are suffering from hunger and poverty. Climate change and major communicable diseases remain formidable challenges. Humanity has a major choice to make between openness and isolation, and between progress and retrogression.

In this complex and changing world, where are we headed and where is the future of Asia? To answer these fundamental questions of our time, we must not let our vision be blocked by floating clouds. Instead, we must dispel the clouds to see the sun, as we say in Chinese, so as to have a keen grasp of the law of history and the trend of the world.

We live at a time with an overwhelming trend toward peace and cooperation. In a world aspiring for peace and development, the cold-war and zero-sum mentality looks even more out of place. Putting oneself on a pedestal or trying to immune oneself from adverse developments will get nowhere. Only peaceful development and cooperation can truly bring win-win or all-win results.

We live at a time with an overwhelming trend toward openness and connectivity. Human history shows that openness leads to progress while seclusion leaves one behind. The world has become a global village where our interests are intertwined and our economic and social progress interconnected. To promote common prosperity and development in today's world, we have no choice but to pursue greater connectivity and integrated development.

We also live at a time with an overwhelming trend toward reform and innovation. A Chinese philosopher recognized as early as over 2,500 years ago that one doesn't have to follow a beaten path if he wishes to benefit the people and one doesn't have to observe old conventions if he wishes to get things done. Reform and innovation are the fundamental driving force of human progress. Those who reject them will be left behind and assigned to the dustbin of history.

To follow the trend of our times and advance the well-being of all people, I proposed the initiative to build a community with a shared future for mankind and I have since had many in-depth discussions with various parties. I am glad that this proposal has been welcomed and endorsed by a growing number of countries and their peoples. It has also been written into important UN documents. I hope that people around the world will work together toward this community with a shared future for mankind and make Asia and the world peaceful, tranquil, prosperous, open and beautiful.

— With the future in mind, we need to treat each other with respect and as equals. We should uphold the five principles of peaceful coexistence, respect the social system and development path independently chosen by each country, respect each other's core interests and major concerns, and follow a new approach to state-to-state relations featuring dialogue rather than confrontation, and partnership instead of alliance. We must refrain from seeking dominance and reject the zero-sum game. We must refrain from beggaring-thy-neighbor and reject power politics or hegemony with the strong bullying the weak. Instead, we must properly manage differences and work together for enduring peace.

— With the future in mind, we need to promote dialogue and share responsibility. We should act on the vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security, and firmly uphold the international order and system underpinned by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. An integrated approach should be taken to counter traditional and non-traditional security challenges, and coordination should be enhanced both bilaterally and multilaterally. We must ensure that various security mechanisms coordinate with each other in an inclusive and complementary manner rather than undercut each other. This will lead us to universal and common security.

— With the future in mind, we need to engage in cooperation for win-win results. We should stay committed to openness, connectivity and mutual benefits, build an open global economy, and reinforce cooperation within the G20, APEC and other multilateral frameworks. We should promote trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, uphold the multilateral trading system, and jointly foster new technologies, new industries and new forms and models of business. This way, we will make economic globalization more open, inclusive, balanced and beneficial to all.

— With the future in mind, we need to uphold inclusiveness and seek harmony without uniformity. We must strengthen bilateral and multilateral cooperation in culture, education, tourism, youth, media, health, poverty reduction and other fields. We need to promote mutual learning among civilizations as it will help us build bridges of friendship, drive social progress, and safeguard peace for the region and beyond.

— With the future in mind, we need to treat nature with respect and treasure our planet. It is important to have a vision of green, low-carbon and sustainable development, and respect, accommodate and protect nature. We need to increase exchanges and cooperation, share experience and jointly meet challenges in climate change, environment protection, energy conservation and emission reduction. We must pursue further progress along the path of sustainable development featuring increased production, higher living standards and healthy ecosystems so that our future generations can enjoy blue skies, clear water and lush mountains.

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