Speech by Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei of the People's Republic of China At the 15th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement
(Sharm El Sheikh, 16 July 2009)
I am very pleased to come to Sharm El Sheikh, the City of Peace, for the 15th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement. I would like to extend, on behalf of the Chinese Government, warm congratulations on the opening of the Summit. I also want to thank Egypt for the good preparations it has made for the Summit and convey deep appreciation for Cuba's contribution during its presidency of the Non-Aligned Movement.
The Non-Aligned Movement is an important arena for developing countries to pull together for common interests. As a member of the developing world, China ardently hopes for and firmly supports an even greater role by the Non-Aligned Movement in international affairs.
We live in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world, where challenges and opportunities coexist. The international food crisis, energy crisis and financial and economic crisis have erupted in succession and impacted one another, leaving us in a development crisis never seen before. In the meantime, regional hot-spot issues crop up one after another, and terrorist, extremist and separatist elements continue to make waves. We still have a long way to go before common security and stability can be achieved. The theme of this Summit, "International Solidarity for Peace and Development", echoes the calling of our time. Developing countries should speak out loud and clear on this subject.
The international financial crisis that originated in the Wall Street is sweeping across the globe. Developing countries, which are not responsible for it, are suffering the most from it. This is neither fair nor just.
The world community should unite in overcoming the difficulties. At the same time, we also need to have a deep rethink of the underlying causes of the crisis and find the path to change. The crisis will be behind us anyway, but if we simply go back to the old pattern, it is only a matter of time before another crisis of greater scale hits, and we will only be paying a higher price then. As a saying goes, "If you don't want to do it, you find an excuse; if you do, you will find a way." This is Arab wisdom going back centuries. It inspires us to move on today.
China believes that the international community should pay attention to and reduce the repercussions of the crisis on developing countries, particularly the least developed ones, and increase input in and assistance to them so that they can meet the UN Millennium Development Goals. International financial institutions should channel new resources, as a matter of priority, to helping developing countries out of the trouble, and support them in a more flexible, diverse, convenient and timely manner.
China calls on developed countries to take up their responsibilities on the basis of equality and respect, and deliver on their commitments in such areas as official development assistance, trade, debt and technology transfer. This is not a gift or reward. Rather, it is necessary if we are to overcome the crisis and, more importantly, it is a moral obligation of developed countries.
China supports the reform of international economic, financial and trade systems aimed at increasing developing countries' representation, voice and involvement in decision making and building an effective structure of global economic governance. From a long-term perspective, economic globalization must move forward in the direction of balanced development, shared benefits and win-win progress and must be anchored in order, rules and ethics.
China holds that the international community, while concerned about the financial and economic crisis, should not overlook climate change, food security, energy and resources security, public health security, natural disasters and other global issues. It should keep development high on its agenda and help developing countries enhance their capacity to respond.
China is committed to strengthening South-South cooperation and developing and improving various cooperation mechanisms. It is true that the global financial crisis has brought the Chinese economy tremendous difficulties and challenges, but we will honor all the assistance pledges we have made. The Chinese people are true in words and resolute in action.
The complex and destabilizing factors in the international security landscape are on the rise. Traditional and non-traditional security issues are tied up, old problems are evolving under changed circumstances, and new developments are re-igniting old tensions. All these call for multilateralism and cooperation.
Respect for sovereignty and political independence of states and peaceful settlement of disputes are important principles established by the Charter of the United Nations. We hope that all parties will stick to dialogue and consultation and foster a culture of reconciliation when addressing international disputes and differences and "practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbors" in the spirit of the Charter.
Terrorism, extremism and separatism constitute a severe challenge to the stability and development of relevant countries and pose a grave and immediate threat to various regions and even the world as a whole. We must firmly oppose them and fight them relentlessly. This serves the common interests of the international community.
China stands for the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons, upholds the international non-proliferation regime, and supports developing countries' right to peaceful use of nuclear energy. We hope that the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva will make steady progress and launch substantive work at an early date. We want to work with all parties for a successful Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in 2010.
Under the new international circumstances, we need a United Nations that takes developing countries' concerns seriously and accommodates their interests, a United Nations where developing countries have a bigger say. China supports the UN reform, enlargement of its Security Council and increase of representation of developing countries, particularly African countries, as a matter of priority, so that more small and medium-sized countries will have more opportunities to get involved in the Security Council decision making process.
The international community should continue to keep its eye on Africa and give it support. We should listen to Africa's voice, take seriously its concerns, and, more importantly, respect its will and back up pledges with concrete actions. Peace and security issues of Africa should mainly be addressed by the African people in the African way, and the international community needs to be there to offer help and support. We support the righteous position of the African Union and the Arab League on the Darfur issue, and we support them in playing important roles on a continuous basis.
National liberation and independence of developing countries was a landmark event in the 20th century. We are convinced that their development and reinvigoration will be an irresistible trend of the 21st century. China will continue to stand together with other developing countries and forge ahead shoulder to shoulder with the Non-Aligned Movement for building a harmonious world of enduring peace and common prosperity!
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.