Xi Jinping's dreams for China and for the world

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Zheng Bijian

April 11, 2018

Zheng Bijian, founder and chairman of the China Institute for Innovation and Development Strategy, speaks at the launch ceremony for the second volume of " Xi Jinping: The Governance of China" Wednesday in London. [Photo by Wang Zhiyong / China.org.cn]

Your Royal Highness, Duke of York,

Minister Jiang Jianguo, Ambassador Liu Xiaoming,

Ladies and gentlemen, friends,

Good morning!

This launching ceremony of the multi-language versions of "Xi Jinping: The Governance of China, Volume II" at the London Book Fair, comes just after Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era was established as the Party's guiding philosophy at the 19th CPC National Congress last year and enshrined into the Constitution of China at its 13th National People's Congress just last month. At a time when US President Donald Trump is starting a trade war with China, the world is particularly concerned about where China is heading and how a rapidly rising China is going to get along with other countries. The best and most authoritative answers to these questions are found in this second volume and the previously published first volume of "Xi Jinping: The Governance of China." Therefore, the launching ceremony today is both timely and very meaningful.

You may notice from the table of content that Volume II starts with "socialism with Chinese characteristics and the Chinese dream" and ends with "a community with shared future." The opening chapter describes China's expectations and goals, which is the "Chinese dream" and the closing chapter explains China's stance on its relationship with the rest of the world and the goal it pursues for the world, which is China's dream for the world. Here I would like to share two points with you on the theme of "Xi Jinping's dreams for China and for the world."

I.The Chinese dream is about realizing the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation by pursuing the path of peaceful development

China used to be a powerful country but then it declined. Let me start with the historical process since modern times. China fell behind because it missed the historical opportunity for modernization offered by the industrial revolution that started in Britain. You may all know that Lin Zexu was the leader of the famous campaign to suppress opium in the 1840s, but you probably don't know that he was also "the first person to open his eyes to the outside world in modern China." He organized people to read English newspapers and then presented summary reports to the emperor. He was the first Chinese person to seriously think that China should learn from the achievements of the Western industrial revolution.

Since the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, the Chinese people, who had stood up during the People's Revolution, have always dreamed about lifting the country from poverty and weakness and achieving prosperity, rejuvenation, and well being for the people through modernization. Now we are getting much closer to realizing this dream. The 19th CPC National Congress declared that "socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era." The goal of the "new era" is to realize this dream, and China has already drawn up a roadmap for it: on the basis of finishing the building of a moderately prosperous society in all aspects by 2020, a two-step approach should be taken to basically achieve modernization by 2035 and to make China a great modern country in every dimension by 2050.

You are all concerned about the future direction of China. China's goal is to achieve the Chinese dream of great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation through peaceful development, that is, peaceful rise. Looking back at the rise of the world's industrialized powers in the past, war had almost always been an indispensable element. But China alone has pursued a development path of peaceful rise in the past 40 years, moving from poverty to affluence and from backwardness to prosperity. This is the most cost-effective development model for a country. So why not continue with this path? Unless another world war breaks out, no one can divert China from its path of peaceful development. It has been our development path for the past 40 years and we will continue to follow this path in the next 40 years. I recommend that you read the first article in the diplomacy chapter in Volume II, "China's Diplomacy Must Befit its Major Country Status," which is actually a speech Xi Jinping made at an internal party meeting. He emphasized that China's diplomacy must "firmly follow the main thread of serving peaceful development and national rejuvenation" in order to strongly support the Chinese dream of great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. I'd also like to inform everyone here that the "path of peaceful development" was written into the Constitution of the People's Republic of China last month.

II. The dream of the Chinese people for the world is to build a community with shared future for mankind in the new round of economic globalization.

It is wonder that when socialism with Chinese characteristics enters a new era, the world economy also comes to a critical point with a new round of economic globalization around the corner!

The economic globalization that started in the 1970s and initiated and led by the United States, has now met with challenges from the United States. We have two options before us to deal with the challenges. One is to find a way out through trade protectionism with the slogan of "domestic interest first"; the other is to lead economic globalization into a new stage through rational deployment of existing and new social productive forces, rational combination of the financial capital with the real economy and the optimization of global governance and systemic reform of economic and political orders, guided by the concept of "a community with shared future for mankind". The first option is going backward and cannot solve the problems of economic globalization. It is obviously not a solution. The second option requires us to take initiative to properly resolve the new problems of economic globalization and to open up new prospects, which is clearly the right choice. A good example of the second option is the "Chinese solution" elaborated by Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The Chinese solution is to "build a community with shared future for mankind and achieve win-win cooperation for shared benefit." What happened in the past 40 years has proven that countries may have different history, cultures, social systems and ideology, but we can develop various converging interests in the process of economic globalization and then build communities of interests that will provide strong foundation of interest for a community with shared future in which all mankind are bound together by the same destiny. I'd like to bring to your attention that "the community with shared future for mankind" --- this new concept of international relations proposed by President Xi was also incorporated into the Constitution of the People's Republic of China last month.

Building "a community with shared future" for win-win cooperation and shared benefits in the process of advancing a new round of economic globalization is Xi Jinping's idea of how a rapidly rising China should get along with the rest of the world, and that is also his dream for the world. 

The "Chinese dream" that seeks the renewal of the Chinese nation through peaceful development and the "world dream" that aspires to build a community with shared future through consultation with and efforts by peoples of all countries have the common elements of pursuing peace, development, cooperation and shared benefits and rejecting the old path of external expansion and hegemony.

I believe that is an essential thought in Xi Jinping's book. 

Let me conclude by wishing the launching ceremony a great success! Thank you!

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