On December 31, 2012, an inaugural ceremony for the China Public Diplomacy Association was held in Beijing. Li Zhaoxing was elected Chairman. Yang Jiechi, Minister of Foreign Affairs attended the ceremony and delivered congratulatory speech.
Yang remarked that public diplomacy is the objective demand for improving the nation’s diplomatic pattern under new circumstances and is an important exploratory field in China’s diplomatic work. As is proposed in the report of the 18th National CPC Congress that it is imperative for us to earnestly promote public diplomacy and people-to-people and cultural exchanges, the promotion of public diplomacy under new circumstances has to meet higher requirements. The promotion of public diplomacy and people-to-people and cultural exchanges under new circumstances means that special emphasis will be placed on enhancing mutual understanding between China and other countries, deepening China’s relations with other countries and striving for a virtuous interaction between and common development for China and the world. More efforts shall be made to develop the spirits of equality, mutual trust, tolerance, mutual learning, cooperation and win-for-all, to strengthen dialogues and exchanges with peoples of all countries and to enhance mutual understanding, trust, friendship and cooperation.
Yang pointed out that public diplomacy requires resources from all communities and active participation of the whole society. Yang hoped that the China Public Diplomacy Association will sincerely follow the spirit of the 18th National CPC Congress, make important contributions to the promotion of China’s public diplomatic work and create for national development and foreign affairs a sound environment for public opinions and a solid foundation for people’s will.
Li Zhaoxing noted in his speech that the China Public Diplomacy Association will contribute to strengthening the soft power of China by mobilizing, coordinating and organizing social resources and the public for the promotion of China’s public diplomacy in an inclusive and pioneering manner.
The China Public Diplomacy Association is a national non-profit social organization. Ma Zhengang, former China’s ambassador to Britain and Chairman of the National Committee at the Council for Security and Cooperation in the Asia Pacific (CSCAP) and Shu Yi, council member of Association for the Promotion of Peaceful Reunification of China and member of the Central Research Institute of Chinese Culture and History were elected Vice Chairmen.