On the evening of January 21, Ambassador Cong Peiwu hosted the 2020 Chinese New Year reception at the embassy. Nearly 400 guests, including co-chairs of the Canada-China Legislative Association, Senator Joseph A. Day, Senator Victor Oh, and MP Jean Yip, as well as representatives of overseas Chinese, Chinese-funded institutions, Chinese students studying in Canada, and media, and friends from all Canadian sectors, were present at the reception.
In his remarks, Ambassador Cong noted, for the past 70 years since the founding of the New China, under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, we have adhered to the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics, sweated and toiled as we pressed ahead with concrete efforts for achievement, making historic development achievements. In 2019, we have steadily promoted high-quality development and achieved fruitful results in economic growth and poverty alleviation. Facing the complex situation of rising risks and challenges, China's economic growth has remained stable and improving, with GDP per capita exceeding 10,000 US dollars. The sense of gain, happiness and security of the Chinese people has never been so great today.
We insist on leading development with innovation and have become a major innovation country with important international influence. Our lunar probe Chang'e-4, for the first time in human history, landed on the far side of the moon, and the Beijing Daxing International Airport "phoenix spreads its wings". These achievements demonstrate the extraordinary Chinese splendor and Chinese strength.
We actively shoulder international responsibilities and inject positive energy into the international community. We hosted the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, the International Horticultural Exhibition, and the second China International Import Expo, showcasing a civilized, open and inclusive China to the rest of the world. China has become the mainstay of maintaining world peace and stability and the main force promoting global development and prosperity.
2020 will be a year of milestone significance in the process of the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. We will continue to implement our commitment to opening up, be determined to walk along the road of peaceful development and will resolutely safeguard world peace and promote common development. We are willing to join hands with people of all countries in the world to push forward the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.
2020 also marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Canada. The half-century development history of China-Canada relations shows that a healthy and stable development of China-Canada relations is in the common interest of the two countries and the two peoples. As long as we insist on treating each other as equals and respect each other, our relations can maintain stable development. At present, China-Canada relations are experiencing serious difficulties. I hope that the Canadian side will make a correct decision as soon as possible and take practical measures to bring China-Canada relations back on track.
Ambassador Cong also extended Chinese New Year blessings to the vast numbers of overseas Chinese, staff of Chinese-funded enterprises and overseas Chinese students, emphasizing that the Embassy in Canada will continue to uphold the principles of "putting people first and conducting diplomacy for the people", and provide better consular services for overseas Chinese and students through tangible measures.
Senator Day and MP Jean Yip highly appraised the development achievements the New China has made over the past 70 years, and fully commanded the historical contributions Chinese Canadian have made. They stressed the importance of friendly people-to-people exchanges between both countries and wished China continuous development and prosperity.
During the reception, Chinese artists in Canada performed a wonderful program. The guests tasted Chinese food and exchanged greetings. People renewed their friendship at this gathering and then took photos together.