Promoting People-to-People Exchanges and Mutual Learning with the Chinese Language as the Bridge
Speech by H.E. Ambassador Sun Weidong at Award Ceremony of the 21st “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition in India
4 July 2022
Distinguished guests, judges and candidates,
Dear teachers and students,
Ladies, Gentlemen and Friends,
It is my great pleasure to attend the award ceremony today. First of all, I would like to congratulate on the full success of the 21st “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition in India. Thanks for the participation of all contestants and the support from relevant universities and institutions. Thanks to the judges and the organizing committee for their hard work. Congratulations to Ms. Darshana Dewashi (Gao Bingying in Chinese) for obtaining the championship of this competition. You will represent the Indian students and compete in the global finals together with the learners of Chinese all over the world. I hope you can achieve good results again.
Chinese is spoken by the largest number of people in the world. To learn Chinese well is to seize opportunities and embrace the future. The “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition you participated in is an important featured event for international cultural exchanges, which is reputed as the Chinese language “Olympics” Competition. It is a platform for Chinese learners from all over the world to show their Chinese proficiency, communicate their learning experience and test their learning achievements.
In this year’s competition, the students got well prepared and participated actively, which showcased their excellent Chinese ability. While watching the video of the event and listening to the speeches, I can feel the enthusiasm of everyone who aspires to learn Chinese well and understand China and Chinese culture better. I can perceive your devotion to learn Chinese and your perseverance during the epidemic. I can see the hope and strength to jointly promote people-to-people exchanges and mutual learning between China, India and even the whole world with Chinese language as the bridge.
Dear teachers, students, and friends,
As Chinese President Xi Jinping has pointed out, “Countries may have various kinds of differences and disagreements and even encounter problems with each other, which is to be expected. But people from all over the world live under the same sky, share one and the same home planet and belong to one and the same family. People across the world should be guided by the vision that all the people under the heaven are of one family, embrace each other with open arms, enhance mutual understanding, and seek common ground while setting aside differences. Together, we should endeavor to build a community with a shared future for mankind.”
“Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students adheres to the theme of “One World, One Family”, which is the manifestation of the unique Chinese worldview of “All nations should live in harmony” which means coordinating the relations among different countries and promoting mutual respect, cooperation and common development.
At present, the shadow of the epidemic is still inflicting the world, and the Ukraine crisis is lingering on. The world is undergoing major changes unseen in a century. No country can cope with the challenges alone. The world is in urgent need of dialogue, communication, exchange and understanding. By learning each other’s language, we could build a bridge of communication and understanding, reach the consensus of helping each other in times of difficulty, and jointly uphold world peace and development. The population of China and India totally amounts to over 2.8 billion which accounts for one-third of the world’s population. This means that harmonious coexistence and common development of China and India will make great contribution to the cause of peace and development of mankind.
Dear teachers, students, and friends,
At the end of last month, President Xi Jinping chaired the 14th BRICS Summit, shared thoughts with Prime Minister Modi and leaders of BRICS partners including Russia, Brazil and South Africa online, drawing a new grand blueprint for BRICS cooperation, and sending out a powerful message of this era to the world calling for peace not war, development not regression, openness not isolation, solidarity not division, and cooperation not confrontation.
The Beijing Declaration issued by the BRICS Summit, reaffirms the importance of people-to-people exchanges in enhancing mutual understanding, friendship and cooperation among BRICS nations and people. It also declares to support the digital transformation of education including vocational education, commit to ensure education accessibility and equity, promote the development of quality education.
Focusing on the theme of “Foster High-quality BRICS Partnership, Usher in a New Era for Global Development”, 170 BRICS events in various fields will be held throughout the year, over 30 major outcomes will be expected, among which education plays an important part. With the strong support of all parties, we have initiated the establishment of BRICS TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) Cooperation Alliance, launched the BRICS Skills Competition, strengthened the cooperation within BRICS Network University and BRICS University League, and maximized the level of communication among teachers and students in BRICS countries, which injects new vitality to the cooperation among emerging market countries.
China and India are both developing countries and have the largest number of young people in the world. The BRICS will hold Youth Summit, which support youth development as a priority and encourage strengthened exchanges among BRICS youth. It is hoped that young people of China and India will cherish the friendship between them, jointly safeguard the general trend of people-to-people and cultural exchanges between the two countries, learn from each other and make common progress.
Dear teachers, students, and friends,
With the COVID-19 pandemic still dragging on, the Chinese government has been committed to a people-first and life-first philosophy and formulated a dynamic zero-COVID epidemic prevention policy based on China’s national realities, and has achieved remarkable results. On the premise of ensuring the safety for epidemic prevention, China has always provided convenience to foreigners who really need to come to China, and has constantly adjusted its visa policy dynamically. China attaches great importance to the concerns of Indian students returning to China and has started relevant work, and maintained close communication with its Indian counterpart on the resumption of direct flights between China and India. We hope that people-to-people exchanges as well as educational and cultural communications between China and India will be more convenient in days to come.
Indian young people have the gift for multilingual learning. India has the unique ancient civilization of the East. Indian youth will surely show their talent and brilliance in the final of “Chinese Bridge”. I hope that the students strive to learn Chinese well and take the advantage of your good understanding of Chinese to further comprehend Chinese culture and Chinese people, make Chinese friends and introduce Indian customs and folklore to them, bring back Chinese culture, history and stories to India as well, and endeavor to become the cultural messengers for promoting China-India friendship and implementing “One World, one Family”.
I would like to also express my heartfelt thanks to all the teachers and school leaders dedicated to Chinese education in India. We will, as always, encourage and support more and more Indian young students to study in China and actively build a bridge of friendship for communication and exchanges between the youth of our two countries.
Finally, I wish you all academic progress, good health and all the best.
Thank you all!