The President and First Lady of the State of Israel, Your Excellency Mr. Reuven Ruvi Rivlin, and Mrs. Nechama Rivlin,
Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear Friends,
Shalom! Erev Tov!
I am honored to have you all here tonight, celebrating the 65th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China. You have my heartfelt gratitude, Mr. President and First Lady, we are greatly honored to have you here with us tonight. My thanks go to all the friends who are present here and who are absent tonight for your important understanding and support of China-Israel relations. Toda Raba.
The founding of the People's Republic of China 65 years ago ushered in a new era for the Chinese people and the world. Great changes have taken place ever since, and China is witnessed as a promising land with fast economic growth and overall social progress. The living standards, the educational level and cultural life of the Chinese people have greatly improved, in particular, more than 600 million people have been lifted out of poverty.
China is now the world's second largest economy, and an important contributor to the world growth and prosperity, which contributes almost 30% to the world economic growth. Since the entry into the WTO in 2001, China has imported goods worth $750 billion annually, and created more than 14 million jobs for the global economy. In 2013, China has become the largest trading partner to 128 countries in the world. China's imports of goods approached $2 trillion. Non-financial investment to other countries exceeded $90 billion. And almost 100 million outbound visits were made by the Chinese tourists. In the coming five years, China's imports will reach around $10 trillion, Chinese visitors abroad will be 500 million, 60 times of Israel's population.
The past 65 years has also witnessed China as a firm promoter for world peace and stability. China develops in peace, by peace and for peace. Standing on a new historical point, China will continue to follow the path of peaceful development, stay firm on reform and opening-up, and play a constructive role in promoting peace and stability to the world.
Under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, 1.3 billion Chinese people are now in an endeavor to fulfill two centenary goals, namely, to complete the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020 and to turn China into a modern socialist country by the mid-21st century. That is the realization of the great renewal of the Chinese nation, of the Chinese dream, which is the dream of the country, the dream of the nation and the dream of the Chinese people. In our joint efforts, the Chinese Dream will come true. And in turn, it will present great opportunities for the world, for our Israeli friends.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear friends,
We now live in an era of economic globalization. The world needs China, and China needs the world. China prefers mutual beneficial and win-win or all-win situations. Only in this way could the world prosper and advance forward successfully.
China is resolute in stabilizing growth and promoting reform. We will further accelerate the transformation of the development model, push forward structural readjustment through structural reform and make good use of innovation. By so doing, we will be able to maintain a medium-high growth rate, move toward medium-high level of development and upgrade the economy.
China is resolute in pursuing a more proactive strategy of opening-up. We will focus on stabilizing export and actively expanding import. We will follow a stable and more open policy on foreign capital. We will continue to improve and standardize the business environment, in order to attract more foreign businesses and investments, adopt the advanced technologies, matured managerial expertise of other countries. China will always be an open and inclusive power.
China is resolute in following the path of peaceful development. China is fully aware of its responsibilities and expectations from the international community. We will play our due role to establish a new type of international relations based on win-win cooperation and provide more public goods to the world. We will play a more proactive and constructive role in addressing international and regional hotspot issues to promote peace, security and stability.
China is resolute in playing an increasingly responsible role in responding to non-traditional security threats. In the current battle against Ebola, China has sent medical supplies and a number of teams of epidemiologists and specialists to the 3 West African countries. Last month China announced an additional $32 million aid package for these African countries and provided the World Health Organization and the African Union each with $2 million of cash aid. Five days ago China announced a new batch of assistance worth at least $16 million in total to Ebola-stricken areas in West Africa on the basis of previous assistance.
Ladies and gentlemen, Dear friends,
In the recent years, we have seen increasingly frequent exchanges at all levels and fruitful cooperation in various fields between China and Israel. Three state leaders and members of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China have paid their visits to Israel. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then President Shimon Peres have also visited China.
China has now become Israel's largest trading partner in Asia and third largest trading partner in the world. The two-way trade volume increases more than 200 times compared with that of the year of 1992, from over $50 million to $10.8 billion. Pragmatic cooperation is carried out in an all-dimensional and multi-level way, which has brought more mutual understandings, more trade, more investment, more job opportunities and more tangible benefits to our two peoples.
Looking ahead, I have great confidence in the future of China-Israel relations. I hope we could seize the good opportunities of the Chinese Dream and make it into our common dream. I firmly believe that China and Israel will continue to make joint and persistent efforts to enhance our mutual respect and trust, explore the great potential of cooperation. The future of our relations will be full of opportunities and excitement.
Ladies and gentlemen, Dear friends, we have the Chinese young artists with us night. They are going to present us with wonderful Chinese music and dances. I wish all of you a fantastic evening.
In conclusion, I would like to propose a toast,
To the 65th National Day of the People's Republic of China,
To the peace and prosperity of China and Israel,
To the friendship between our two peoples,
Le Haim! Toda Raba Shebatem!