Celebrating the Centenary of the Communist Party of China and Looking forward to a Brighter Future of China-Vanuatu Relations
2021-06-19 18:15

On June 19, Ambassador Zhou Haicheng's article entitled "Celebrating the Centenary of the Communist Party of China and Looking forward to a Brighter Future of China-Vanuatu Relations" was published on Vanuatu Daily Post. The full text is as follows:

2021 marks the centenary of the Communist Party of China (CPC). 100 years ago, China was still a semi-colonial and semi-feudal society. Faced with internal disturbances and foreign aggression, Chinese people were living in misery. Different political forces had put forward various plans to save the country, but they had all failed. In 1921, the CPC was founded. This epoch-making event fundamentally changed the destiny of the Chinese people and the Chinese nation as well as the trend and landscape of the world.

I. The history of the CPC is one of endless endeavors for the wellbeing of the Chinese people and the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. Over the past century, under the CPC leadership and through arduous exploration, struggles and efforts, the Chinese nation has stood up, grown rich and is becoming stronger. It has made a tremendous transformation, from being bullied by foreign powers to standing tall in the world and from being backward and beaten to moving towards modernization in all aspects. China has created the "two miracles" of rapid economic growth and long-term social stability.

The CPC has led the Chinese people to achieve industrialization in just a few decades, which has taken the developed countries hundreds of years. From 1979 to 2019, China's annual GDP growth rate was 9.4% on average. Starting from almost scratch, China has become the second largest economy and largest industrial country in the world, with a per capita GDP exceeding US$10,000. China has made significant and original achievements in strategic high-tech fields such as high-temperature superconductivity, nano-materials, life sciences, manned space flight, lunar exploration, quantum science, deep-sea exploration, super-computing, Beidou navigation system and large aircraft manufacturing. The total mileage of high-speed rail in China accounts for over two-thirds of the world's total, and the mileage of expressways ranks the first globally. China has built the world's largest social security system, with basic medical insurance covering more than 1.3 billion people and basic endowment insurance covering nearly 1 billion people. China's average life expectancy has reached 77.3 years. Since the reform and opening-up policy was launched, China has lifted 770 million people out of poverty. Absolute poverty that had plagued the Chinese nation for thousands of years was historically eliminated.

The leadership of the CPC is the choice of history and the people. The CPC has always been deeply rooted in the land of China, carrying out its founding mission for the prosperity of the country, national revival and the wellbeing of the people. In all struggles and undertakings, the members of the CPC are at the forefront, even at the expense of their own lives. This is why the CPC has won the trust and support of the Chinese people, and has developed from over 50 members at the very beginning into the world's largest political party with more than 91 million members. Polls conducted by international authoritative institutions show that the Chinese people's satisfaction with the Chinese government has remained over 90% for many years.

II. The history of the CPC is one of striving for the common good for the world and peace and development for mankind. The CPC has always upheld an independent foreign policy of peace and pursued its mission of promoting human progress.

During the revolutionary years, the CPC led the Chinese people to create the oriental battlefield in the World Anti-Fascist War. The victory of the Chinese revolution greatly promoted the liberation of human beings. Since its founding, the People's Republic of China has actively advocated and practiced the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, persistently safeguarded the interests of the vast developing countries, and upheld the principle that all countries are equal regardless of size, strength and wealth. China has resolutely opposed colonialism, hegemonism and power politics, and provided economic and technical assistance to other developing countries within its capability. Since the reform and opening-up began, China has held high the banner of peace, development, cooperation and mutual benefit, adhered to the win-win strategy of opening-up, and firmly safeguarded international fairness and justice. Since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, the CPC has committed itself to promoting the building of a community with a shared future for mankind and the building of a new type of international relations, advocating the joint construction of the "Belt and Road Initiative", and advancing the reform of the global governance system. The CPC has also been actively conducting friendly exchanges with political parties in the world, learning from each other's experience in governance and enhancing state-to-state relations.

Under the CPC leadership, China has always been a builder of world peace. Actively participating in the United Nations peacekeeping operations, China is now the second largest contributor to the UN's regular budget and peacekeeping budget. China contributes the largest number of peacekeepers among the permanent members of the UN Security Council. China actively looks for political settlement of major international and regional hotspot issues, including the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, the Iranian nuclear issue, Iraq, Afghanistan, Myanmar, and Syria, playing a constructive role in bridging differences and promoting peace and talks.

Under the CPC leadership, China has been a contributor to global development. It has contributed more than 30% to the world economic growth for many years, and has become the largest trading partner of over 120 countries and regions. In the 1997 Asian financial crisis, the 2008 global financial crisis and the COVID-19 context, China weathered the storms with its well-calibrated policies and solid economic fundamentals, and served as a major engine driving regional and global economic recovery. China has signed more than 200 Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) cooperation documents with over 170 countries and international organizations, and has invested more than US$110 billion in other BRI countries. According to a World Bank report, the BRI will lift 7.6 million people out of extreme poverty and 32 million out of moderate poverty in the relevant countries.

Under the CPC leadership, China has always been a true follower of multilateralism. China is committed to defending the UN-centered global governance system and the basic norms governing international relations underpinned by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. It has provided Chinese wisdom and contribution to tackling global challenges. China is committed to building a global ecological civilization. It will strive to implement its nationally determined contributions on climate change, peaking carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality before 2060. China has led the global anti-epidemic cooperation and launched the largest global emergency humanitarian campaign since the founding of the People's Republic. China has provided free vaccines to more than 80 developing countries in urgent need and exported vaccines to 43 countries. We have provided US$2 billion in assistance for COVID-19 response and economic and social recovery in developing countries hit by the pandemic. We have provided medical supplies to more than 150 countries and 13 international organizations.

III. The relationship between the CPC and Vanuatu can be traced back to the days before Vanuatu's independence. Under the CPC leadership, China staunchly supported the people of Vanuatu in resisting colonialism and fighting for national independence, and cast an important vote for Vanuatu's membership in the United Nations. China became one of the first countries to establish official relations with Vanuatu after its independence in 1980. Over the past 39 years since the establishment of diplomatic ties, the China-Vanuatu relationship has made significant progress. Pragmatic cooperation has yielded fruitful results. People-to-people exchanges have kept unfolding. Vanuatu's political parties took the lead in the Pacific in forging party-to-party relations with the CPC and currently the number of party-to-party relations between China and Vanuatu stands at seven. Political party exchanges have become a major driving force for the development of China-Vanuatu relations and a prominent feature of the friendship between the two countries.

China has been doing its best to support Vanuatu's development with no political strings attached. Over the years, China has donated batches of water tanks, vehicles, disaster relief materials, office furniture and appliances, sports and medical equipment, customs inspection systems, satellite television transmission equipment, etc. China has helped Vanuatu build its Parliament House, Prime Minister's Office buildings, Korman Stadium, National Convention Center, Malapoa College, Vanuatu Agriculture College, USP Emalus Campus extension project, Luganville International Wharf, Tanna-Malekula road project, community clinics, etc. So far, Chinese government has dispatched over 200 doctors to work in two Chinese resident medical teams in Port Vila and Luganville respectively. China offers around 20 Chinese Government Scholarships to Ni-Vanuatu students and various training opportunities to hundreds of Vanuatu citizens every year. These projects have played a positive role in promoting Vanuatu's social development, capacity building and people's livelihood.

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, China and Vanuatu have looked out for each other and waded through difficulties together. China quickly provided anti-epidemic supplies and vaccine doses, rendering strong support to Vanuatu's response efforts and medical and health services. China-Vanuatu relations and the friendship between the two peoples have been further deepened in the joint fight against COVID-19, disaster response and efforts to revive the economy, which has illustrated the true meaning of a Community with a Shared Future for Mankind.

China and Vanuatu are both developing countries. We value independence and self-reliance. We are committed to satisfying the people's yearning for a better life. While China celebrates the centenary of the CPC, embarking on a new journey of building a socialist modern country in an all-round way and marching towards the second centenary goal, Vanuatu, also in a new development stage, is working to ensure a smooth transition to a developing country and building a wealthier state. There are huge potentials for the two countries to cooperate in a wide range of areas such as agriculture, fisheries, forestry, infrastructure, transportation and communication, trade, finance, education and training, tourism, culture, ocean exploitation, public health and traditional medicine. With 1.4 billion people and a 400 million middle-income group, China is a huge market. As China opens wider to the outside world, it will provide more export and development opportunities for Vanuatu. In addition, China and Vanuatu enjoy broad prospects in extensive cooperation in the international arena such as strengthening global governance, addressing climate change and promoting environmental protection. China stands ready to work with Vanuatu to strengthen policy alignment, expand exchanges and cooperation, and upgrade the China-Vanuatu comprehensive strategic partnership so as to better serve the interests of both countries and peoples.

The centenary of the CPC ushers in the prime of its life. It will break the waves and sail out for a new glorious journey ahead. Under the strong leadership of the Party Central Committee with General Secretary Xi Jinping at the core, the CPC will continue to toil and moil to realize the Chinese dream of the great national revival, and to make new and more contributions to humanity. The CPC is willing to work hand in hand with the government and political parties of Vanuatu to create a brighter future for China-Vanuatu relations!