Speech by Ambassador Cui Tiankai at the Guest of Honor Country Presentation,Global Market Forum, 2015 Book Expo America
2015/05/27

 

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and gentlemen,

It is my great pleasure to join you in celebrating China as the Guest of Honor Country at the 2015 Book Expo America. I wish to take this opportunity to express my sincere congratulations to the organizers.

The great Chinese scholar and educator Confucius once said "You never open a book without learning something". Thomas Jefferson said "I cannot live without books." Indeed, books, in many forms, enable mankind to keep its memory, spread knowledge and inspire learning. Today, technology has revolutionized our way to get information and people acquire knowledge through not only hard copy books but also online resources. Whatever means we resort to, man cannot live without books and reading. Reading keeps us informed and in perspective; Reading helps us to build deeper understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity; And reading protects us from falling into a narrow zero-sum mindset.

The American people love reading. According to a 2014 PEW Research Center study, half of American adults read more than 5 books a year. In fact, the Chinese people are very interested to learn about the U.S. through books. Data shows that over 90% of key works on humanities by the best-known contemporary American scholars have been translated and published in China. Compared with that, however, the number of Chinese works that have been translated and published in the U.S. remains small. Therefore, I am encouraged to see that President Xi Jingping's works and books of well-known Chinese writers such as Nobel laureate Mo Yan are now available on the shelves of American book stores.

China and the U.S. share the responsibility to build a new model of relationship for mutual benefit and for a better world. There is a strong and growing interest by our peoples to learn more about each other, as bilateral ties in many fronts continue to expand. Increased exchanges in publications will no doubt contribute to the deepening of mutual understanding and friendship between our great two peoples.

I applaud China's participation in BEA as the guest of honor country. I appreciate the organizers' efforts in making this happen and I wish the China event a great success.

Thank you.

 

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