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Speech at the Seminar for Readers of the Portuguese Editions of Xi Jinping: The Governance of China | Updated: 2018-11-30 16:19
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Lisbon, November 26, 2018

Wang Xiaohui, Executive Vice Minister of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee

Ladies, gentlemen and friends,

Good morning.

It is my pleasure to be in Lisbon, a city well known for its culture, to conduct exchanges at this seminar for readers of the Portuguese editions of Xi Jinping: The Governance of China. On behalf of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee and the State Council Information Office of China, I would like to extend our warm welcome and heartfelt thanks to all guests present here.

Xi Jinping: The Governance of China Volume I, published in 2014, and Volume II published in 2017 are collections of important speeches and written works by Chinese President Xi Jinping. They have been published in 24 languages and distributed to more than 160 countries and regions, receiving wide attention and attracting positive comment around the world. With their far-reaching global influence, the two volumes serve as authoritative guides to Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, the Communist Party of China, and contemporary China.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening up. Over the past 40 years, especially since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, the Chinese people have made tenacious efforts under the leadership of the Party and effected profound changes to our country, moving socialism with Chinese characteristics into a new era. From 1978 to 2017 China’s GDP grew at an annual rate of 9.5%. As the second-largest economy in the world, China has contributed 30% to world economic growth every year since 2012. China also brings benefits to the rest of the world by promoting opening up worldwide and providing a steady impetus for global economic growth.

I have learned that the people of Portugal, in common with many other countries, wish to understand the driving forces behind China’s rapid development and the implications of a fast-growing China. Xi Jinping: The Governance of China is key to understanding China and the Communist Party of China. Taking this opportunity, I would like to share with you some of my thoughts on the book.

First, the book gives insights into China’s path to development. Enjoying modernization and a better life is a shared aspiration among peoples of all countries. There are many paths to modernization. From the middle of the 19th century the 5,000-year-old Chinese nation suffered domestic strife and foreign aggression, and the Chinese people achieved national independence and liberation through an arduous struggle led by the Party. Since the founding of the People’s Republic of China, and especially since the start of reform and opening up, the Party has led the Chinese people in blazing a path of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and accelerated our country’s development to keep pace with the times. China’s unique culture, history and national conditions demand a development path adapted to our needs. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, President Xi has led the nation to expand the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics and reform and opening up in the new era, and achieve historic progress in developing the Party and the country. Xi Jinping: The Governance of China, based on the trend of contemporary China’s development and focused on the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation, provides systematic answers to major theoretical and practical questions regarding the overall goals, tasks, plans and strategies of China’s modernization, laying out a blueprint for the country’s future development. Xi Jinping: The Governance of China offers a broader understanding of developing countries’ paths to modernization, and offers a wider vision to countries and nations that wish to expedite development while maintaining independence.

Second, the book demonstrates China’s principle of people-centered development. A core concept and value of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, people-centered development is a distinct theme of Xi Jinping: The Governance of China. Xi Jinping Thought upholds the principle position of the people, and takes the people’s aspiration for a better life as the ultimate goal of development. Xi Jinping Thought respects the people’s creativity, and emphasizes drawing on the wisdom and strength of the people and speaking for the people. President Xi has made numerous telling statements in the process of governing the country, such as “The original aspiration and the mission of the CPC is to seek happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenation for the Chinese nation”, “The wellbeing of the people is the fundamental goal of development”, “We should grasp and promote in reform whatever the people care about and expect”, “We should see that our people will always have a strong sense of fulfillment, happiness, and security.” The book gives the readers a better understanding of the Party’s fundamental principle of serving the people wholeheartedly, and President Xi’s commitment to putting the people first, staying close to the people, and respecting the people.

Third, the book elucidates China’s proposal of a global community of shared future. Today, peace and development are the prevailing trend, but the world is still in a phase of instability and uncertainty. Protectionism and unilateralism are on the rise and economic globalization has suffered a setback. Faced with the global question of what is happening in the world and how we should respond, and based on the trends of contemporary China and the world, President Xi has proposed building a global community of shared future. His proposal elicited positive comment and a warm response from the international community, and has been adopted in UN literature. Xi Jinping: The Governance of China elaborates on China’s vision of a world of lasting peace, common security, and common prosperity, an open and inclusive world, and a clean and beautiful world. The book underlines China’s commitment to being “a builder of world peace, contributor of global development, and maintainer of global order”. Examples of China’s efforts to build a global community of shared future include expanded international cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative, the establishment of the China-UN Peace and Development Fund and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, and the First China International Import Expo held earlier this month. This book gives the readers a better understanding of China’s future vision of the development trends of the world, the times and humanity.

Ladies, gentlemen and friends,

Although located on opposite sides of the Eurasian continent, China and Portugal are closely linked in ways that defy distance. Portugal was the starting point of the ancient Silk Road in Europe. The peoples of Portugal and China have a long history of friendship. As China and Portugal have developed closer exchanges in recent years, studying each other’s languages has gained in popularity among the two peoples, with many Portuguese studying programs available at 17 institutions of higher learning in China. In 2017 Chinese tourists paid 257,000 visits to Portugal, up 41% from 2016. Consumption of Portuguese wines is increasing in China, while quality products made in China are reaching more people in Portugal. Recently I came across the book China Vista Por Um Sinologo Portugues, written by sinologist Luis Cabral at the University of Minho, Portugal. The illustrated book tells of Mr. Cabral’s fascinating experiences of Chinese wine, tea, and food, paper, brushes and ink, and natural landscapes and gardens. I believe the book will help Portuguese readers understand Chinese culture. Mr. Cabral, thank you for joining us today. I hope more people in Portugal will learn to appreciate Chinese culture and engage in cultural exchanges between the two countries, as Mr. Cabral has done.

President Xi is going to pay a state visit to Portugal in a few days. Next year will mark the 40th anniversary of China-Portugal diplomatic relations. I am confident that the peoples of the two countries will take these opportunities to drive deeper economic and cultural exchanges and cooperation, forge closer ties, and create brighter prospects for our friendly relations.

In conclusion, I wish every success to this readers’ seminar, and health and happiness to the Portuguese people.

Thank you.

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