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Remarks by Ambassador Qin Jian at the Farewell Ceremony for Somali Students Awarded Scholarship of China

(From Chinese Embassy in the Federal Republic of Somalia)

2017/09/07

Today, I am very pleasure to get together with all of you here, and you will set foot on the journey to Chin, as a famous Chinese saying goes, "what a great delight to receive friends from afar!" On behalf of the Chinese government and people, I would like to extend the most sincere welcome to the Somali students going to China studying under the Chinese Government Scholarship Program, and express hearty congratulation to you and your families. The Chinese people are welcome to you with friendship hands. I hope you spending wonderful and unforgettable time in China.

Dear students, before you going to China, would you like to know the country China is.

First of all, I want to say when you set foot on China, you will personally feel China is a country with the sincere and friendly to Africa. The friendship is from the heart and derived from China-Africa has long been established a solid deep friendship. China and Africa have a similar historical experience, suffered colonial oppression in the past. The last century, China strongly supported African national liberation movement, nearly 40 years reform and opening up, China has been supporting economic development in Africa, carrying out a large number of investment, and infrastructure construction, such as rail, road, port, airport, industrial park, free trade zone, electricity, telecommunications, wind energy, solar energy, power plant as well as poverty eradication, progress industrialization and economic diversification with great contribution for African economic and social development. In December 2015, China and Africa jointly held the Johannesburg Summit of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum in the spirit of extensive consultation, joint efforts and shared benefits, the Chinese President Xi Jinping announced the elevation of the China-Africa relationship to a comprehensive strategic and cooperative partnership, and called for strengthening and consolidating the five pillars of China-Africa relations, namely political equality and mutual trust, win-win economic cooperation, mutually enriching cultural exchanges, mutual security assistance, and solidarity and coordination in international affairs. He also proposed ten cooperation plans with a focus on helping Africa achieve industrialization and agricultural modernization, opened a new era of win-win cooperation and common development between China and Africa. The prospects of China-Africa cooperation will be the more and more growing, and the benefits to people of China-Africa will be the more and more increasing.

When you step on China, you will sincerely feel that China is a country with deep cultural heritage. The Chinese culture stretches for five thousand years, broad and profound, the Chinese civilization, the African civilization and the Somali civilization are an important parts of world civilization. The Chinese side upholds the civilized coexistence of each other, mutual education, mutual promotion, complement of each other, and jointly promoting the endless development of human civilization. The core of Chinese culture is harmony and unity, emphasizing the peace and development, advocating a world of lasting peace and common prosperity and a community of a shared future for humanity.

In the face of complicated situation in today's world, the increasingly prominent gap between rich and poor, armed conflict, terrorism, climate change, major natural disasters, China advocates the construction of lasting peace and stability, common development and prosperity of the world is the core values of the Chinese nation and the concrete embodiment of the Chinese culture. The Chinese culture is a powerful spiritual force to promote world peace and development and create a happy life for mankind.

When the students step on China, you will witness in yourselves, China is a country with booming and thriving, deeply feel China's speed, China's development and China's great achievements. China is actively implementing its 13th Five-Year Plan, achieving a comprehensively well-off society and the Chinese dream of the great renaissance of the Chinese nation. The second half of this year, the Chinese Communist Party will convene the nineteenth national congress, which will have a significant and far-reaching significant in China as well as world. In May this year, China hosted the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing, it is an important opportunity and platform for strengthening international cooperation and driving away the clouds of the world economic doldrums. It also injected a strong impetus to the economic development and improvement of the people's livelihood in developing countries. China's development is the world's opportunity, China's economic development is currently contributing to the world economy rate of 30%, the next five years, China's total imports will reach 8 trillion USD, the total foreign capital will reach 600 billion USD, the total foreign investment will reach 750 billion USD, which will provide a broad market for the development of the world, more adequate capital, richer products, more valuable cooperation opportunities.

China and Somalia are far by mountains and rivers, but the friendly exchanges between the two countries have a long history, the friendly relations between the two countries is deeply rooted and enduring. More than 600 years, when China opened the ancient Maritime Silk Road, the famous Chinese navigator Zheng He's voyage led a fleet of more than 170 ships, crossed the Indian Ocean and reached as far as the Red Sea and the east coast of Africa, arrived twice in commercial developed Mogadishu, at that time Mogadishu developed into a well-known trade city in East Africa. China and Somalia established the diplomatic relations in 1960, Somalia is the first country in East Africa to establish diplomatic relations with China, Somalia with other brotherly African countries firmly supported China's resumption of the United Nations legal seat in 1971. Since 57 years of establishment of diplomatic relations, the relations of our two countries has withstood the test of ever-changing international situations, with always respect each other, mutual trust and mutual assistance. From 1960 to 1991, China helped the construction of 89 projects, including National Theater, National Stadium, and Benadir Hospital, which are still the landmark of friendship between the two countries. Since the start of war in Somalia In 1991, the Chinese government has been supporting the peace and reconstruction process in politics, economy and other areas, the relations between the two countries continues to maintain a good momentum of development. This year, the Chinese government provided the emergency food and material assistance to affected Somalia. Facts prove that our two countries have established a long-term fraternal friendship at a trying moment. China will continue to support Somali peace and development, is willing to work together with Somalia to take our friendly relations and cooperation and friendship between our two peoples forward and to write a new friendly chapter.

Education is an important area for friendly relations between the two countries. Youth is the future of the development of bilateral relations and also a force to promote the friendship. Every year, around 50 Somali students go studying in the universities of China under the Chinese government scholarships. So far nearly 1400 students have been studied in China to get the undergraduate, master and doctorate degrees, I hope the more and more Somali students will get the chance to study in China. In this year, more than 100 Somalis have been trained in China in short-term, long-term programs, such as finance, education, agriculture economy, technology, medicine and science etc., China will continue to help the development of human resources, training more talent in Somalia. I hope that the students cherish the opportunity to study in China, and strive to study hard, contribute to the economic and social development in future in Somalia. I hope you will become CEO, managers, engineers, experts and scholars who promote the development of friendly and cooperative relations between China and Somalia, I hope you studying in China deeply understand the Chinese culture and the friendship on the Somali people, and more to introduce the Somali culture, becoming a cultural communicator and a civil friendly ambassador, to contribute to the development of friendly relations between China and Somalia. I sincerely hope the two countries will continue to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in the field of education, deliver more benefits to our two peoples.

Thank you.

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