Remarks by Ambassador Cui Tiankai,Permanent Observer of China to the OAS At the Dialogue Between OAS Members and Permanent Observers
2015/06/19

 

Secretary General Almagro,

Heads of Delegations,

It's a my great pleasure to be invited and speak at the dialogue meeting as China's permanent observer to the OAS. First of all, I would like to congratulate Mr. Almagro once again on his assumption of the Secretary General of the OAS. I wish you success in work and wish the first Assembly after you took office a great success as well.

The world is undergoing profound and complex changes. The prevailing consensus in the international community is to enhance international cooperation and achieve regional common development. The theme of the current General Assembly meeting, "Present and Future of the OAS", embodies the unremitting efforts of members in thinking and exploring Americas' future cooperation and development under the new circumstances.

One seventh of the world's population lives in the Western Hemisphere and a quarter of the world economic aggregate is generated here. Regional countries have common needs and common vision to strengthen cooperation with each other. We support countries of the Americas to develop relations on the basis of mutual respect, equality and non-interference in internal affairs, and we are happy to see regional cooperation in the Americas making the best of the advantages and strengths of each country, improving governance capability and delivering coordinated economic and social development.

The OAS is a key inter-governmental political organization in the Western Hemisphere with the longest history and the largest number of members. In recent years, the OAS has increased its focus on citizen security, anti-drug trafficking, anti-terrorism, poverty reduction, disaster prevention and other important social issues, and has made positive progress. We wish and believe that the OAS, through continuous efforts and improvement, will successfully achieve the established goals and make greater contribution to regional prosperity and stability, as well as the well-being of the people of the Americas.

Friendly exchanges between China and the Americas date back to a long time ago. Particularly in recent years, China's relationship with Latin America and Caribbean states has made enormous progress. The 1st Ministerial Meeting of China-CELAC Forum was successfully held in Beijing in the past January and we're happy to see that Secretary General Almaro, as the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Uruguay at that time, led the Uruguayan delegation to the meeting. Premier Li Keqiang just concluded his visit to four Latin American countries, during which time he made efforts to upgrade China-LAC cooperation, and further pushed forward the China-LAC relationship.

The friendly cooperation between China and the OAS has been developing steadily. Since becoming an observer to the OAS in 2004, China has actively supported the work of the OAS. The two consecutive China-OAS cooperation funds with a total amount of 2 million US dollars have supported more than 70 OAS projects in political, economic, security, social and other fields, benefiting all Latin American and Caribbean countries, including those without diplomatic relations with China. China has financed more than 110 students and officials from Member States or the General Secretariat for further study or training in China, which enhanced mutual understanding and friendship between us. China has also financed part of the renovation work of the Headquarters building and the upgrading of the General Secretariat's office equipment. We do each project step by step and we are happy to see that China has become one of the most active OAS observers.

Going forward, China will continue to work with the OAS to build on the successful cooperation in the past decade and level up our relations. First of all, we will promote important exchanges and enhance mutual political trust. China supports the OAS in updating and improving its own strategy under changing circumstances, and supports the vision of "More Rights for More People in the Americas", proposed by Secretary General Almagro. Secondly, the new cooperation agreement signed at the end of last year, that is, the next five-year Cooperation Fund with a total amount of 1.5 million US dollars and Human Resource Programs such as 15 scholarships each year, will be fully implemented and become the two engines driving China-OAS relations. We will direct our resources to priorities of the OAS in a bid to build showcase projects and enhance the quality of cooperation. Last but not the least, we'll continue to do our utmost to help the OAS with infrastructure and capacity building. We will continue our assistance to the renovation project of the OAS Headquarters that aims to improve its management and operational efficiency.

To conclude, I would like to reiterate, that China highly values and appreciates the key role of the OAS in promoting regional peace, development and integration. Through this important platform, we will continue to strengthen the mutually beneficial cooperation with countries in the Americas, especially with Latin American and Caribbean countries, to promote mutual learning, inclusiveness and common development. I believe that the friendship and cooperation between China and the OAS will reach even greater height!

Thank you all.

 

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