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On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of
the establishment of diplomatic relations between
the P.R. of China and Switzerland

Toast delivered by Vice-Premier Wen Jiabao at the Reception
Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Establishment of 
Diplomatic Relations Between China and Switzerland
(September 13, 2000)

Your Excellency respected President Ogi of the Swiss Confederation,
Ladies, gentlemen and friends :

It is indeed a great pleasure for us to gather together with Mr. Adolf Ogi, President of the Swiss Confederation, and the other Swiss friends in his party, who have made a special trip all the way from Switzerland, to jointly celebrate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Switzerland on this beautiful golden autumn day. On behalf of the Chinese Government and the Chinese people, I would like to extend my warm congratulations to President Ogi, the Swiss Government and the Swiss people.

Fifty years ago, just three months after the birth of the People's Republic of China, the Swiss government announced its diplomatic recognition, and soon afterwards formally established diplomatic relations with her. Under the then international circumstances, this was a move full of vision and courage and constituted a valuable support to New China. The Chinese government and the Chinese people have consistently given positive evaluation to that action. After the establishment of diplomatic relations between our two countries, despite the changes in the international situation, our relationships have stood up to all tests and maintained a steady and smooth development in general, thanks to the joint efforts by both sides. As a result, the friendly co-operation in various fields has continuously expanded and developed in depth. The Sino-Swiss friendship has become increasingly popular. In recent years, the development of our relations has assumed a favourable momentum. In particular, the successful visit last year to Switzerland by President Jiang Zemin, as the first Chinese head of state to do so, played an important role in promoting bilateral relations between the two countries. In retrospect, we feel satisfied with the sound development of Sino-Swiss relations. Here, I would like to express my appreciation to all present and past Swiss governments and friendly personages from all walks of life for their unremitting efforts and positive contributions to the development of Sino-Swiss relations.

The Chinese government attaches great importance to developing relations with Switzerland and highly values the Swiss government's pursuance of the "One China" policy on the Taiwan issue. China and Switzerland are different in terms of national conditions, culture and traditions, political systems as well as the level of economic development, but have no direct conflict of interests. Conversely, we share an extensive range of common interests on a number of key issues such as that of preserving world peace and that of promoting common development. The further development of our bilateral relationships of co-operation and mutual benefit is in conformity with the common and long-term interests of both sides. Looking forward to the future, we are fully confident of the magnificent prospects for the relations between our two countries. At present, the political and social situation in China is stable, and the economic construction and various undertakings are developing in an all-round way. China will further strengthen and expand exchanges and co-operation in various fields with all countries of the world. Taking the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations as a new starting point, we are ready to make joint efforts with our Swiss friends, on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, to push Sino-Swiss relations to greater and faster progress in the new century.

Now I propose a toast
To the continued development of Sino-Swiss friendship and co-operation
To the deepening of friendship between the peoples of our two countries, 
To the health of President Ogi,
And to the health of all the ladies and gentlemen present here.

(Original text in Chinese)

Toast delivered by Vice-Premier Wen Jiabao English Chinese
Speech delivered by President Adolf Ogi English Chinese


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