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H.E. Ambassador Mr. Xue Bing Wrote an Article on Fifth Plenary Session of the 19th Communist Party of China Central Committee on Post Courier and the National

On 3 December 2020, H.E. Ambassador Mr. Xue Bing wrote an article entitled "China’s New Development, PNG’s New Opportunities" on Post Courier and the National, elaborating on the outcomes of Fifth Plenary Session of the 19th Communist Party of China Central Committee. The full text is as follows:

On 26th to 29th October, 2020, the Fifth Plenary Session of the 19th Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee was held in Beijing. This is an important meeting of overarching and historic significance at a critical time when China enters a new stage of development toward realizing the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. The Plenary Session adopted the Proposals of the CPC Central Committee for Formulating the 14th Five-Year Plan for National Economic and Social Development and the Long-Range Objectives Through the Year 2035, which will be the guide of action for China’s economic and social development in the coming five years and beyond.

What are the development achievements of China in the past five years? What kind of development will China pursue in the future and how will China achieve it? What is the significance of China’s development for promoting cooperation between China and Papua New Guinea? As the Chinese Ambassador to PNG, I would like to share with PNG friends some information and observation.

From 2016 to 2020, during its 13th five-year plan period, China’s economic and social development has reached a new level, benefiting the whole population in the country. China’s gross domestic product grew steadily and will exceed 100 trillion yuan (about 50.15 trillion Kina) in 2020. Over the past five years, 55.75 million Chinese rural residents were lifted out of poverty, and more than 60 million new urban jobs created. Annual grain output remained above 650 million metric tons for five consecutive years. Basic medical insurance covers over 1.3 billion people, and basic old-age insurance covers nearly 1 billion people. 2020 will witness China’s final victory over poverty and completion of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects. With more than 800 million people lifted out of poverty over the past 71 years since the founding of the People’s Republic, China will wipe out absolute poverty for the first time in history and achieve ten years ahead of schedule the poverty reduction targets of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. These achievements fully demonstrate the success of the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics and the leadership of the CPC.

Looking ahead to the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025) and the further future, the main highlights of China’s development are the three “new”s. First, China will enter a new stage of development. At a historic moment when the timeframes of the two centenary goals converge, China will begin a new journey toward fully building a modern socialist country. This will be a milestone in the history of China’s development and a major step forward in the historical process of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. By 2035, China will reach the level of a middle-income developed country. It will be the first time in history for a non-western country with a billion-level population to achieve industrialization and modernization, which will provide useful experience and reference for other developing countries to achieve their national development goals.

Second, China will firmly implement the new development philosophy. We will continue to put people at the center, identify pursuing high-quality development as the main theme and deepening supply-side structural reforms as the main task, taking reform and innovation as the fundamental driving force, and meeting the people’s ever-growing needs for a better life as the fundamental goal. We will unswervingly implement the new development concept of innovative, coordinated, green and open development that is for everyone, which conforms to the historical pattern of development, meets the needs of human society, and injects energy into world economic development.

Third, China will actively foster a new development paradigm. We will accelerate a new development paradigm with domestic circulation as the mainstay and domestic and international circulations reinforcing each other. What we envision is not a development loop behind closed doors, but more open domestic and international circulations. The dual circulation are well connected and facilitate each other, and will add fresh impetus to the Chinese economy and beyond. China has a population of 1.4 billion and a middle-income group that exceeds 400 million. The Chinese economy is not a pond but an ocean. With an estimated total import of 22 trillion US dollars in the coming decade, China is the most promising market in the world. As the new paradigm takes shape, the China market will continue to grow in size and capacity, thus providing broader space for countries around the world to access the market and share the opportunities.

Today China firmly stands as the world’s second largest economy, largest manufacturer, largest trader in goods and largest holder of foreign exchange reserves. It is also the second largest trader in services, second largest user of foreign direct investment and second largest provider of foreign investment. The strength of China is being transformed into a sustained power engine for the world economy, generating a continuous flow of bonuses to the rest of the world. The profound changes in the world unseen in a century are compounded by the raging pandemic across the world. This is posing unprecedented tests and challenges to mankind. Against this background, China’s development will be more important as it will inject confidence into the building of peace and development of the world and global governance in the next coming five years and even longer period.

China’s new development will certainly offer new opportunities for China-PNG cooperation. First, it brings new opportunities for poverty reduction cooperation. Both China and PNG are developing countries with a shared dream of poverty alleviation and elimination. China will continue to provide assistance to and carry out cooperation with PNG under the framework of South-South cooperation and the Belt and Road Initiative. Over the years, China has provided a large amount of assistance to support the economic and social development of PNG, which has brought tangible benefits to the local community and been widely welcomed by the PNG Government and people. The Juncao and upland rice program, which has received personal attention and support from President Xi Jinping, has greatly promoted the economic and social development and poverty alleviation in Eastern Highlands Province. The Butuka Academy aided by China has made it much easier for local community to access education, and is nurturing many more talents for sustainable development in PNG. More than 40 Chinese companies have invested in PNG and are operating construction projects in different parts of the country. They have created more than 6,000 local jobs and contributed a significant tax revenue for PNG. China will continue to offer scholarships and training opportunities to young PNG students, and continue to send medical teams to PNG.

Second, it brings new opportunities for trade and investment cooperation. Our two economies are highly complementary and boast huge potential for cooperation. This year, 77 entities in PNG were approved by China to export seafood products directly to Chinese market. The first China-PNG Joint Economic and Trade Commission and the Inaugural Meeting between Development Cooperation Agencies of our two countries have been held successfully. PNG also participated in the High-level Video Conference on Belt and Road International Cooperation, China-Pacific island countries Investment Promotions Event and Digital Economy Development Forum and other platforms. PNG companies attended the 3rd China International Import Expo held in Shanghai earlier this month, to further explore business opportunities. As President Xi Jinping stressed on many occasions, China’s door of opening up will not be closed but will only open even wider. We welcome PNG and all other developing countries to get a ride on the express train of China’s development, deepening practical cooperation, and jointly build BRI in such areas as trade and investment, infrastructure, agriculture, forestry and fisheries. I believe it will not take long for more PNG enterprises to become suppliers for China, and more high-quality agricultural products such as coffee, tropical fruit, copra, tuna and lobsters will be exported to China and served on the table of the Chinese people.

Third, it brings new opportunities for climate related cooperation. Green development and promoting harmonious coexistence between man and nature is one of the key elements of China’s new development philosophy. From the conclusion of the Paris Agreement to the full implementation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, China has all along committed itself to building a clean and beautiful world. President Xi Jinping solemnly announced that having met its 2020 climate action targets two years ahead of schedule, China will strive to reach carbon dioxide emission peak before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060. China’s efforts in emission reduction will encourage other countries around the world to fulfill their responsibilities in addressing climate change. China is ready to increase cooperation and help PNG and other Pacific island countries to address climate change and maintain natural ecological security.

Fourth, it brings new opportunities for anti-pandemic cooperation. Under the leadership of CPC, the Chinese people have fought COVID-19 with strenuous struggles and tremendous sacrifices, and achieved major strategic success. Building on that, China has advanced epidemic control and economic and social development in a coordinated way, and promptly resumed normal life and production. In the third quarter, China has returned to growth and recorded a 4.9 percent increase year-on-year. Many authoritative international organizations forecast China will be the only major economy to expand this year. China is also one of the front-runners around the world in the research and development of COVID-19 vaccine, and many countries are working with China to conduct phase III clinical trials. When available, China will share the vaccines with other countries through various channels. As pledged by President Xi Jinping, China will make its COVID-19 vaccine a global public good, making the vaccines accessible and affordable, especially for the least developed countries and high-risk groups. China will continue to join hands with PNG to combat the pandemic, restore economic and social development, and build a community of shared future for mankind. We are confident that when the pandemic is over, the cooperative relations between our two countries will be even stronger.

The Fifth Plenary Session has set the course for China’s development. China is determined to embrace wider, broader and deeper opening-up and share its huge market with the world. It will further promote international cooperation to achieve mutual benefit and win-win results. PNG is welcome to join this process and share the benefit. I firmly believe that by working together, China and PNG will further expand pragmatic cooperation in various fields, contribute to our domestic development and effectively address global challenges such as the pandemic and climate change. We will steer the ship of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between our two countries to break the waves and navigate steadily toward a brighter future.

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