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Remarks by Consul General Chen Peijie at the Reception for Celebrating the Second Anniversary of the Opening of Chinese Consulate General in KK and the Assumption of Office of Deputy Consul Mr. Zhang He
2017-05-12

The Honourable Deputy Chief Minister of Sabah CUM Minister of Infrastructure Development, YB Tan Sri Datuk Seri Panglima Joseph Pairin Kitingan and YBhg Puan Sri Datin Seri Panglima Genevieve Kitingan, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, dear friends:

Good afternoon!

Welcome to the Consulate General, gathering in joys with my colleagues and me! One year ago, it was here that we celebrated the first anniversary of the establishment of the Consulate General. Time passes by so quickly, in the blink of an eye, the Consulate General is 2 years old.

Last year, I said that I hope we could have more stories to share at the second anniversary. Looking back on the past year, there are really lots of stories. The Consulate General has been persistent to play the role as the boat of friendship, the bridge of cooperation, the window of service, as well as the home of overseas for the Chinese citizen, and making lots of efforts, inter alia,

- to interact more in-depth with each other through holding events such as the China’s National Day Reception, Mid-Autumn Festival Media get-together party, Consular Protection Appreciation Reception, and Chinese New Year Reception;

- to promote closer exchanges between Kota Kinabalu and Hangzhou, having achieved high-level official visits and concluded friendly cities by signing the memorandum;

- to arrange the delegations of the State Assembly and of the local media paid successful visits to China, demonstrating a higher level of bilateral exchanges;

- to continuely support the local Chinese education, providing books worth RMB150,000 to local Chinese schools, establishing the CG scholarship with total of RMB160,000 to students pursuing study in China and outstanding students from not well-off families, and donating RMB50,000 to the school at Ranau to rebuild its premise ruined during the earthquake.

The visa service has been operated smoothly, about 24,000 visas were issued so far, which has greatly facilitated the local friends visiting China.

More cultural activities are also rich and colorful, which include holding the second ''China Film Festival" and Tianjin Folk Art Exhibition, coordinating cultural performances, famous teachers’ lectures and camps, supporting local calligraphy events and festive celebration like the Chinese New Year and the Dragon Boat match.

Concerns are also given to special groups in past year. We visited the elderly home, contributed a car shed in collaboration with a Chinese company, donated medical equipment to the Thalassemia patients, and invited Chinese medical experts to conduct on-site clinic in KK, Kudat, Sandakan and Tawau. Besides, several MOU on cooperation between enterprises of two sides signed, some projects have started operating, more business visits are in progress.

All efforts and achievements have manifested the deepening of the bilateral exchanges and cooperation in various aspects such as the local government, economy, education and culture, and the deepening of friendly brotherhood as well.

In the process of carrying out the work, the Consulate General have got full support from the State Government and the local community, which includes the support to the consular protection cases involving Chinese citizens.

Miracle was created as the HK resident in Kudat was found and rescued after missing for 10 days. In the boat sank tragedy during the Spring Festival this year, the Federal Minister met the rescued on board in person, YAB CM and several Ministers went to hospital to express sympathy and condolence to the rescued and their families, Tan Sri and some others sent me messages, the State’s Police Commissioner investigated the case in person, and sent police fellow to safeguard the rescued during the whole period, the Minister of Tourism carefully concerned and personally dealt with the aftermath of the tragedy, the local Chinese community and Chinese enterprises dispatched volunteers to look after the rescued day and night, many leaders of the Chinese community told me that they were ready to provide assistance any time. I was moved though in sadness and anxiety.

It makes me further believe that we cannot avoid facing difficulties from time to time, but as long as we put in efforts together based on bilateral friendship and facing the future, we will be able to overcome all difficulties, and solve all issues.

In addition to the anniversary celebration, there is another theme of today's Reception, that is to welcome the assumption of the new Deputy Consul General, Mr Zhang He. As you know that his predecessor DCG Sun Xiaowu has left the post for more than three months. I should say, DCG Sun made a big contribution to our first two years’ work, and I believe DCG Zhang will be definitely making further contribution to our future work. I expect all friends to give your support to DCG Zhang, just as the same as you have given to me.

Dear friends, the month of May is an important month. Besides the celebration of Tatau Kaamatan, May 31st will usher in the 43rd anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Malaysia. And a few days later,on 14th and 15th, the Belt and Road Forum for international cooperation will be held in Beijing, bringing together more than 1,200 distinguished guests including Malaysian Prime Minister Najib and other heads of States, Governments and international organizations. Focusing on the Belt and Road construction, the Forum aims to reach consensus in integrating development strategies, to identify major cooperation projects, and to build closer and pragmatic partnership networks, as to further achieve mutual benefits and win-win outcomes.

Friends from Sabah often ask me, what is the “Road and Belt Initiative”, what could it bring to Sabah. I would like to share what I read in newspapers a few days ago, the Federal Minister of Tourism gave the answer, he said, China's Road and Belt Initiative will benefit locally by attracting more tourists from China. It is believed that the Beijing Forum will also give the answer, and as we all work shoulder to shoulder to promote the economic and trade, closer personnel and cultural exchanges, and realize more fruitful cooperation, the answers will be further revealed to the local friends too!

Last but not least, the Consulate General will continue to work hard this year, continue to matchmaking for local interactions, continue to support the cultural and educational exchanges, continue to care for special groups, and so on. In short, we would be willing to work together with friends from all circles of Sabah and Labuan, to promote the development of the two sides, build mutual understanding and mutual trust, share and live in harmony, peace and prosperity!

Thank you all!

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