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Remarks by Ambassador Zhang Zuo at the Opening Ceremony of Photo Exhibition "China in My Eyes"

2019-09-27

(September 26th, 2019, Kumanovo Handcraft Museum)

Respected Ms. Desanka Stosevska, Representative of the Municipality Kumanovo,

Respected Mr. Ljupcho Malenkov, President of the China-North Macedonian Friendship Association,

Respected Mr. Zika Krstevski, President of the Kumanovo branch of the China-North Macedonian Friendship Association,

Ladies and Gentlemen, friends,

Welcome to the opening ceremony of the photo exhibition “China in My Eyes”. It fills me with pleasure to visit the historic and scenic Kumanovo for the first time and to celebrate with distinguished guests the National Day of China.

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. During the past 70 years, under the strong leadership of the Communist Party of China, the Chinese people have forged ahead against all odds through self-reliance and built China from widespread poverty and illiteracy into the world's second largest economy. The Chinese people’s lives have been transformed from hunger and shortage into moderate prosperity in all respects. During the past 70 years, China has stood up, grown rich, and is becoming strong.

All roads lead to Rome. During the past 70 years, China has always adhered to an independent diplomatic policy of peace and embraced opening up as the fundamental national policy. China and other countries have now merged into one community that shares weal and woe. China proactively promotes jointly building the Belt and Road and the China-Central and Eastern European Cooperation, namely the “17+1” Cooperation. This framework has provided a new platform of cooperation featuring openness, inclusiveness and mutual benefits for the Central and Eastern European countries including North Macedonia, and provided a path to realize a community with a shared future for mankind, a community that enjoys lasting peace and common prosperity.

The Chinese people and the people of North Macedonia enjoy profound traditional friendship. Since we established diplomatic ties 26 years ago, our political mutual trust has become increasingly solid. With the "17+1 cooperation" platform, China and North Macedonia have deepened cooperation year by year in various fields, including science and technology, education, agriculture, infrastructure and etc.. China is the largest trade partner of North Macedonia outside Europe. Over 10,000 Chinese tourists came to visit the North Macedonia, and more than 1,000 citizens of North Macedonia visited China in last year. In April this year, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang held a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Zoran Zaev during the 17+1 Leaders’ meeting in Dubrovnik. In June, Speaker Talat Xhaferi made a successful visit to China. In July, through joint efforts of our two countries, the highway from Miladinovci to Stip was opened to traffic. The people to people exchanges between the two countries have become more and more frequent, as a result, the friendship between our two peoples have grown deeper and deeper.

National relations are based upon the friendship between their peoples. Most of the photos on exhibition today are contributed by friends from North Macedonia who have studied, worked or visited China. Therefore, we name the exhibition "China in my Eyes" and hope it can shed light upon the intensive exchanges and intimate friendship between our two peoples. I would like to extend my appreciation to the China-Macedonia Association for Friendship and Cooperation for their hard work for the exhibition and the Municipality of Kumanovo for this ideal venue. My appreciation goes especially to those friends who generously contributed photos for this exhibition.

An old saying in China goes: "One glance is more convincing than thousands of words". I sincerely hope that more and more friends from North Macedonia come often to visit China, to see by themselves the modern China and feel vitality of its development, especially warmth and hospitality of the Chinese people. I hope they will become promoters of China-North Macedonia relations, supporters of the friendship between our two peoples, and builders of the cooperation between our two countries.

This photo exhibition will last one week. Your families and friends are welcome to take a look.

At last, I wish the photo exhibition “China in My Eyes” a great success. Thank you.

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