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Embrace The New Spring Of China-Ghana Relations

Today is the 1st day of the lunar year, which is also known as the Spring Festival. On this beautiful occasion, on behalf of the Chinese Embassy in Ghana, I would like to wish all Chinese and Ghanaian friends prosperity and good luck in the Year of Pig.

The Spring Festival is not only the most important festival in China and some Eastern-Asia countries, but also the most representative element and symbol of Chinese traditional culture. With the continuous deepening and expansion of friendly exchanges between China and abroad, the Spring Festival has gradually become a window for many people in the world to perceive Chinese culture and understand the carrier of China's development and change. I believe that the expectations of the people of all countries including Ghana for the new spring are common, which is to share festivals, long for a better future and strengthen bonds and friendship.

2018,the year of Dog, is a very important year for the Chinese people to realize the China Dream.

In 2018, the Chinese economy continued to develop in a reasonable range in 2018, achieving a steady progress. Defying economic difficulties and downward pressure, China acted on the new development philosophy and achieved a medium-high GDP growth rate of 6.6 percent, hitting all economic targets for 2018. The Chinese economy now exceeds 90 trillion RMB yuan (1 US dollar = 6.7 RMB yuan), with imports and exports totaling more than 30 trillion RMB yuan. China's economic growth contributes nearly 30% to world economic growth. The figures show that China continues to perform with full vigor its role as the most important engine of global growth, and it will maintain its irreplaceable role in the world economy.

The year 2018 is the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening up policy. Under the leadership of President Xi Jinping and the Communist Party of China, the Chinese people continue to deepen reforming levels and expand opening up scope. More than 100 systematic, holistic and reconstructive reform initiatives have been launched. The pace of China's reform will not stagnate.

In a turbulent world, China emerged as a pillar of stability. At international summits such as the G20, APEC and BRICS, President Xi Jinping took a clear stand against protectionism and unilateralism and called for a stronger commitment to the UN-centered international system and rules-based multilateralism, steering those summits to a series of pioneering, pace-setting and institutional outcomes. China had hosted the Boao Forum for Asia meeting, the Summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, and the China International Import Expo, promoting a more equitable and fair system of global governance. For China, the opening of the door to the world will only grow wider.

The Chinese people are on the way to chasing the Chinese Dream, to realize the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. So as the Ghanaian people. Under the outstanding leadership of President Nana Addo Dankwa Afuffo-Addo, Ghana has made remarkable achievements towards the aim of Ghana Beyond Aid in the past two years. We are all working hard, we are all dream-chasers.

In 2018, China-Ghana friendship and cooperation has continued to yield fruitful results.

The high-level exchanges between the two countries are frequent. President Akuffo-Addo attended the Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, paid a state visit to China and reached important consensus with Chinese leaders. The two countries signed eight cooperation documents which set the direction for the future development of bilateral relations. Hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Hon. Minister of Finance, and Hon. Minister of Food and Agriculture of Ghana have successively visited China. The Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Deputy Minister of the International Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, and the Vice Governor of Shandong Province of China also led delegations to visit Ghana. The Chinese Navy fleet visited Ghana for the first time, drawing enthusiastic responses in the Ghanaian society. The two navies conducted joint exercises on the sea and forged profound friendship on the basketball court.

The economic and trade cooperation between the two countries has developed steadily. The bilateral trade volume in 2018 is expected to reach 7 billion US dollars. The number of newly added investment projects ranks first among foreign sources in Ghana. The “Ghana Made” brands blossomed everywhere. The Sunda Diaper Factory and Sentuo Ceramics Factory have been completed and commissioned, offering thousands of jobs to local community. The Jamestown Fishing Harbor Complex has broken ground. Many other projects are also steadily advancing.

The people-to-people exchanges and cooperation between the two countries have developed in depth. More than 1100 Ghanaian students have received Chinese government scholarships. 1329 study visa were issued in 2018 alone. More than 6500 Ghanaian students are studying in China, ranking top of all African countries for five consecutive years. Nearly 1,000 people from all walks of life in Ghana have gone to China for training in 2018. The Chinese Ambassador Scholarship encouraged hundreds of students to study Chinese. Through a series of culture activities held by the two Confucius Institutes and the Ningxia Art Troupe, more and more Ghanaian people begin to know China, understand China and fall in love with China, making the friendship more deeply rooted in our hearts.

The year 2018 is also meaningful for realizing my dream.

I have a dream to build a stronger China-Ghana relationship since I landed this country in June. As the new Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, I visited many districts of the Ashanti Region, Western Region, Eastern Region, Central Region, Volter Region, and Northern Region during 6 months. I have seen the colorful culture of Ghana, feeling the warmth and friendliness of Ghanaian people, realizing the urgent need for development of this country. I had witnessed the bloom and localization of China's manufacturing, China's creation, and China's construction in Ghana. As the Chinese Ambassador, I will make greater contributions for the development of Ghana and the China-Ghana friendship in 2019.

Link our dreams together in this new spring.

In the year ahead, China will collaborate with Ghana to continue to promote a community with a shared future for mankind, uphold equality between countries of all sizes, adhere to non-interference in others’ internal affairs, and work toward a new form of international relations featuring mutual respect, fairness, justice and win-win cooperation. We will work hard together to implement the achievements of the Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation , make our countries prosperous and strong, and turn our dreams into reality.

Once again, I wish everyone a Happy Year of Pig!


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