THE Chinese Embassy has hosted a Chinese New Year reception, the first of its kind since establishing its Embassy in Honiara three years ago.
Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, Government Ministers, backbenchers, Leader of Parliamentary Opposition, Mathew Wale and the Solomon Islands’ Chinese Community made up the embassy’s guest list at the Heritage Park Hotel reception last night.
On behalf of the government and the people of Solomon Islands, Prime Minister Sogavare conveyed best Chinese Lunar New Year wishes to the Solomon Islands Chinese community, the Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to Solomon Islands, Li Ming, staff of the Chinese Embassy and the Government and people of PRC.
“This year’s Chinese Lunar New Year is the year of Rabbit. And in accordance with Chinese traditional culture and zodiac, Rabbit symbolizes wisdom, courage, agility and vitality. These are important attributes that we will need as we work towards strengthening our relations in creating opportunities for all our peoples,” Prime Minister Sogavare emphasised.
The Prime Minister wanted to see Solomon Islands and PRC further deepen exchanges and cooperation.
Enhanced areas of cooperation include policing and security, medical and health, trade, investment, rural development, infrastructure development and people to people exchanges.
He also thanked PRC for its steadfast support towards various Pacific Games projects which are key for the successful hosting of the Pacific Games in November.
“Let me reassure my good friend, His Excellency President Xi Jinping, of Solomon Islands steadfast and unwavering commitment in working together to amplify our relations to new heights. I am thrilled to note that the China-Solomon Islands relations is a classic example of role model relations between China and the Pacific Island countries,” the Prime Minister added.
He also stated, the government will soon open the Solomon Islands new Embassy in Beijing and announce a replacement for the former ambassador, the late John Moffat Fugui.
“It is my honour to announce that we will soon open up our new Embassy in Beijing and I will personally travel to Beijing for this auspicious occasion. Furthermore, discussions are also underway to appoint a new Ambassador of Solomon Islands to the Peoples Republic of China. Once the details are finalised and due processes are completed, we will inform the nation.”
Welcoming guests to the reception, His Excellency Ambassador Li Ming said, “Action speaks louder than words. The Solomon Islands- PRC diplomatic relations have made up for the deficit of the past decades. I am proud to say our bilateral relations has become a role model of relations between China and Pacific Island countries.”
The future, he articulated, is full of confidence. The most outstanding feature of the China-SI relationship is based on equality, respect and tangible outcomes.
“In Chinese traditional culture, rabbit is the symbol of wisdom, courage, agility and vitality. In the coming year, we should run quickly forward like rabbit, overcome all risks and challenges and create a better future,” the Chinese ambassador said.