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Remarks by Consul General Zhang Ping at the Chinese American Federation Forum for Commemorating the 40th Anniversary of US-China Diplomatic Relations
(January 19, 2019)

It gives me great pleasure to attend this forum organized by the Chinese American Federation to commemorate the 40th anniversary of establishment of China-US diplomatic relations.

40 years ago, in line with the fundamental interests of the two peoples and out of extraordinary strategic vision and outstanding political courage, leaders of China and the US made a historic decision to establish diplomatic ties between our two countries. This historic decision produced far-reaching impact on the evolution of international relations. It improved the external strategic environment for both countries and changed the political and economic landscape in the Asia-Pacific region and the world at large. It opened a new chapter for China-US relations, ending nearly three decade long isolation and hostility between the two countries.

Over the past 4 decades, despite various ups and downs, twists and turns, the bilateral relations have achieved historic progress, bringing huge benefits to our two peoples and contributing greatly to world peace, stability and prosperity. China-US relationship has become one of the most important bilateral relationships in the world, assuming more and more strategic significance and global influence.

For many new immigrates in the Chinese community, the establishment of China-US diplomatic ties has a particular significance in personal dimension.

With the adoption of reform and opening up policy in China and the establishment of diplomatic ties, which occurred almost in the same period of time, the two countries reopened its door to each other, making possible the communication and exchange between our two peoples. Among the guests present here tonight, I believe many came to the US during this period of time. Through hard work and with a good education background, many of them achieved success either in business or their career development, contributing in their own way to the economic and social development of the US. They become an integral part of cultural and ethnic mosaic of the American society. Out of a sincere aspiration for a better relationship between the two countries, they engage in promoting bilateral exchange and cooperation, playing the role as bridge and linkage between the two sides, contributing to the strengthening of mutual understanding and friendship between our two peoples. They are not only the beneficiaries, but also the witnesses, participants and contributors of the development of the relationship.

As we look at the journey that the bilateral relations have gone through, we are gratifying to see that the relationship gets wider support from people of different walks of life in both countries. No matter in good times or bad times, they always stand behind the relationship, trying to find ways to move forward it, with a deep conviction that China and the US should only remain as friends. Like many touching stories in Mr. Mundell ‘s documentary, the Better Angels, they devoted themselves to promoting mutual understanding and friendship between the Chinese and American peoples. They are the better angels who connect the hearts and minds of our two peoples and hold our relations together. The understanding and support from our two peoples gave us the strength and confidence to sustain the relationship through many difficulties.

Chinese and American people share fond sentiments towards each other. People to people connections and friendship between our two peoples constitute the foundation of our relationship. To maintain a steady and sound development of China-US relations is in the long term interests of our two peoples.

Under the current political atmosphere where China is regarded as the strategic rival or even a potential threat by some people here in the US, and where some people attempt to scare off people of two countries from getting close to each other and decouple this relationship, it is essential that we make concerted effort to ensure our people to people bond remain strong and the foundation of the relationship remain solid. It is also important that the Chinese community, Chinese students, Chinese investment are treated fairly without be victimized by any demonization or unwarranted suspicion.

We always encourage our members of Chinese community to be the law abiding citizens, to actively engage with and integrate into mainstream society and to contribute to local economic and social development as well as to the better understanding and greater cooperation between our two peoples and two countries.

Today, as China-US relationship is standing at another crucial juncture, it is all the more important that the Chinese community play its role to connect our two peoples together. On this note, I think it is of particular significance that Chinese American Federation has organized this event. They have done a wonderful job in promoting public awareness of the importance of the relationship and of the contribution that the Chinese community has made to its development. I thank President Sher Li and her Federation for their great efforts.

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