Remarks by Ambassador Cui Tiankai at the Gathering With the Rocky Mountain Ballet Theater
at the Chinese Embassy in the United States


Senator Steve Daines and Mrs Daines,

Congressman Greg Gianforte and Mrs Gianforte,

Ms. Charlene Campbell Carey,

Ladies and gentlemen,

Good afternoon. Welcome to the Chinese embassy. It is a great honor and pleasure to have you join us this afternoon.

Seeing all my friends from Montana reminds me of my two pleasant trips to Montana. Let me take this opportunity to thank Senator Daines and Cindy again for your warm hospitality, and Congressman Gianforte for your warm letter of friendship.

During my visits to Montana, I was truly overwhelmed not only by the beautiful scenery there, but more importantly, by the friendly and hardworking people in Montana, and their sincere wish to develop stronger relations and more cooperation with China.

Thanks to the efforts and commitment of all our friends from Montana, in particular, Ambassador Max Baucus, Senator Daines and Congressman Gianforte, cooperation between China and Montana have made encouraging progress. The latest example is the MOU signed for Montana-sourced beef during President Trump's first state visit to China last month. It is our hope that this agreement will be implemented in a timely and effective manner.

There are people here in D.C. who might think that beef export from Montana to China is only a small and insignificant part in our bilateral trade. But I believe that for the people of Montana, this is not just dull and insignificant trade statistics. It is a growth opportunity that gives full play to Montana's potential, and it is certainly the pride of the people of Montana to send world-class beef across the ocean to the dinner tables of Chinese people.

Of course, Montana boasts not only beef, but also other great agricultural products like wheat, barley, and beets. You have the best mining research capability, vibrant technology industries, beautiful national parks, and first-rate schools. The prospect for cooperation between China and Montana is more than bright.

Naturally, China and the U.S. could have differences. Yet some people in D.C. believe that economic and trade issues between our two countries should be resolved through a trade war. I want to tell them that economic and trade relations between China and the U.S. are mutually beneficial in nature. Cooperation will make both countries winners and confrontation will make everybody loser. A trade war between China and the U.S. will do immediate and long-term damage to both economies. Moreover, it will certainly weaken people's confidence and darken the future prospects of global growth. As the two largest and leading economies in the world, China and the U.S. will definitely bear the brunt.

Therefore, we would never allow any trade warrior to undermine the interest of the Chinese and the U.S. economics, or any politician, in the pursuit of their political agenda for special interest groups, to harm the well-being of the hard-working Chinese or American people, including farmers and ranchers of Montana.

Now the world is talking about China's 19th Party Congress concluded in October. It was indeed a historic event, for it opened up a new era of China's development and modernization. China has set the goals, drew up a blueprint and formulated a whole set of strategies, policies and measures both on the domestic and external fronts for the coming decades.

Let's examine what are the most-frequently-used words in these strategies and policies. I think they are: people-centered development, peaceful development, mutual respect and mutual benefit, openness and inclusiveness, cooperation and coordination, and community building.

It is evident that China is seeking people-centered development with meeting people's growing need for better life as our goal. Such development seeks mutually beneficial cooperation with other countries, and leads us to build a community of a shared future for mankind. We believe China will do well only when the world does well, and as China develops, the world will become a much better place. We are not seeking our own development at the expense of others, and we reject zero-sum games. For China, the world is like the "Big Sky", and we need more stars to light it up.

A good understanding of China's intentions enables us to see the historic opportunities for cooperation between our two great countries. We can cooperate at bilateral level, as well as regional and international levels. We can cooperate for better global governance, as well as answering more effectively to global challenges. We can cooperate on promoting bilateral economic and trade relations, as well as with regard to the Belt and Road initiative.

Of all these areas of cooperation, there is something truly fundamental - the mutual understanding and friendship between our two peoples. I believe this is the real foundation for the long-standing relations between China and the U.S.

In this regard, cultural exchanges have been playing an outstanding and unique role. We highly appreciate the long-term contribution by the Rocky Mountain Ballet. We are also grateful to the Missoula Children's Theater, the Montana Repertory Theater and many others. Their efforts make it possible for Chinese and American people to appreciate and understand the art of each other. Today, the Rocky Mountain ballet will perform in the Embassy. It is indeed a valuable opportunity for us to enjoy the wonderful culture and art from Montana.

I am confident that, by working together, we will build stronger and more robust ties between China and Montana, and inject new impetus to the friendly ties between our two great peoples.

Thank you.



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