Address by Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi at the Ceremony Marking the Launch of the Website and Unveiling of the Logo of the Seventh Asia-Europe Meeting
Beijing, 30 June 2008
It gives me great pleasure to join you, participants in the ASEM Senior Officials' Meeting, at the ceremony to launch the website and unveil the logo of the Seventh ASEM Summit.
Since its inception, ASEM has registered important progress in political dialogue, economic cooperation and social and cultural exchanges, known as its three pillars. On the political front, Asian and European countries have engaged in dialogue on major international and regional issues to strengthen mutual understanding and trust. In the economic and trade field, the two sides have actively conducted macro-economic and financial policy dialogues with a view to tapping their enormous growth potential and expanding scope for cooperation. Culturally, ASEM partners have strongly advocated the harmonious co-existence of different cultures and civilizations, and engaged in extensive personnel and academic exchanges. Through its development over the past ten years and more, ASEM has established itself as an important channel of dialogue and cooperation between Asia and Europe. It has not only strengthened ties between Asian and European countries, but also promoted interactions and exchanges between the people of the two regions. As many of the colleagues present here have been personally involved in this process, you are in the best position to appreciate its achievements.
The Seventh ASEM Summit will be held in Beijing in October. Asia and Europe have both maintained the momentum of economic growth and made continued progress in regional cooperation and integration. At the same time, since the beginning of this year, problems concerning food security, energy prices and financial market volatility have directly affected the economic and social development of some Asian and European countries. Against this backdrop, it is very important and highly relevant for leaders from Asia and Europe to gather in Beijing and have in-depth dialogue and discussions on major international and regional issues and on ways to boost development and improve people's well-being. That is why we have set the theme of the Summit as "Vision and Action -- Towards a Win-Win Solution". We hope that the Summit will contribute to strengthened dialogue on an equal footing and mutually beneficial cooperation between Asia and Europe in all areas to the benefit of people in both regions.
The year 2008 is a special year for China. A massive earthquake hit Sichuan Province over a month ago. The Chinese Government acted promptly after the quake in an all-round rescue and relief campaign which proves to be highly effective. In the course of our relief endeavor, ASEM partners and the entire international community have expressed deep sympathies and provided generous assistance to us, for which we wish to express our heartfelt thanks. We are confident that with the efforts of all the Chinese people and the support of the international community, we will build an even better home for the affected people.
This year also marks the 30th anniversary of China's reform and opening up. Over the past three decades, historic changes have taken place in this country. China today is more closely connected to the rest of the world, and China's development has offered more and more growth opportunities to Asia, Europe and the world at large.
In just over a month, China will host the 29th Summer Olympic Games. We wish all athletes from Asia and Europe every success at the Games.
Just now, you saw the logo of the Summit and you were the first to see it. The design draws its inspiration from the Chinese knot, a traditional Chinese ornament which symbolizes solidarity and auspiciousness. It is deeply rooted in the Chinese culture and is widely used in China. By designing a logo for the Seventh ASEM Summit based on the Chinese knot, we want to express our hope that people in Asia and Europe will live in harmony, work together for development and build an even better future. The launch of the website today marks a new stage in the preparations for the Summit. We look forward to your continued support and assistance and to a successful summit through our concerted efforts.
Before I conclude, I wish all of you a pleasant stay in Beijing.