Excellencies, Ambassadors of ASEAN Member States to China,
Excellencies, Ambassadors of the Committee of Permanent Representatives to ASEAN,
Mr. Ma Mingqiang, Secretary-General of ASEAN-China Center,
Ladies and gentlemen,
Good evening! I am very pleased to attend the Reception Celebrating the 3rd Anniversary of the Establishment of ASEAN-China Center (ACC). During the past three years, ASEAN-China Center, as the only inter-governmental organization co-founded by the Governments of China and ASEAN Member States, has actively promoted exchanges and cooperation in various fields such as trade, investment, education, culture and tourism between ASEAN and China, which has not only strengthened the ties of friendship between our two peoples, but also made important contribution to the development of ASEAN-China relations. On behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China, I would like to congratulate ASEAN-China Center on your remarkable achievements, and express my gratitude to Secretary-General Ma Mingqiang and all the colleagues of ACC for your hard work.
ASEAN-China dialogue relations have been developing for 23 years. In 2013, both sides celebrated the 10th Anniversary of the ASEAN-China Strategic Partnership. For years, ASEAN and China, in spirit of good-neighborliness and mutual trust, solidarity and mutual support, as well as cooperation and development, have been strengthening and deepening ASEAN-China relations, which have brought about tangible benefits to peoples of both sides. Last year, the Chinese leaders proposed strategic goals of building the ASEAN-China Community of Common Destiny, and the Maritime Silk Road of the 21st Century, and put forward the "2+7 Cooperation Framework", which refers to the two-point political consensus on promoting political and security cooperation and economic development in parallel, and the seven priority areas that include the political field, business, connectivity, finance, maritime cooperation, security and the people-to-people field. This has charted the course of our relations in the years to come, and received wide support and positive response from ASEAN Member States. In 2014, we launched negotiations on an upgrading of the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area (ACFTA). We signed the Memorandum of Understanding on the Establishment of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), of which China and all the ten ASEAN Member States will become the founding members. We successfully held the 1st ASEAN-China Cultural Exchange Year, and staged nearly 120 spectacular events throughout the whole year, bringing to a climax of cultural exchanges between both sides.
In November this year, at the 17th ASEAN-China Summit, on the basis of the "2+7 Cooperation Framework", China put forward a number of new proposals to further strengthen ASEAN-China relations, including negotiating and concluding with ASEAN a treaty of good-neighborliness, friendship and cooperation between China and ASEAN countries, formulating as early as possible the Third Plan of Action (2016-2020) of the ASEAN-China Joint Declaration on Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity, exploring the establishment of a Lancang-Mekong River dialogue and cooperation mechanism, and designating 2015 as the year of ASEAN-China Maritime Cooperation, etc. ASEAN-China cooperation enjoys broader prospects and a brighter future.
In 2015, the ASEAN Community will be realized. This will be the first sub-regional community in the Asian history, which will be of great significance and have new positive impact on the development of ASEAN-China relations. The Chinese government takes ASEAN as a priority in its neighborhood diplomacy. China will continue to firmly support the ASEAN Community building and ASEAN’s centrality role in the regional cooperation. China is willing to work with ASEAN countries to deepen mutual trust and expand cooperation, so as to jointly safeguard regional peace and stability, and to promote development and prosperity in East Asia.
ASEAN-China Center is an important platform for exchange and cooperation between the two sides, as ACC enjoys unique advantages in terms of mobilizing resources and promoting cooperation in specific areas. It is hoped that ASEAN-China Center will continue to give full play to its advantages, further improve its institutional building, broaden its vision of work, and remain committed to serving as a facilitator for good neighborliness and mutual trust, a promoter for functional cooperation and a spreader for friendship between ASEAN and China. As the host country, China will provide support and assistance to ASEAN-China Center as always.
The ASEAN-China Strategic Partnership has entered its second decade of development. Our relations have great potential for further development and brace a promising future. It is believed that with the strong support from the governments of ASEAN Member States and China, and with active participation by peoples from all walks of life, ASEAN-China Centre will enjoy better development and make greater contribution to promoting ASEAN-China friendly cooperation in the future.