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|Thursday, September 20, 2001, updated at 09:35(GMT+8)|
Berlin Asia-Pacific Weeks Fosters Ties, World peace
Addressing the opening ceremony, German Chancellor Gehard Schroeder praised the long-term good relations between Germany and China, and expressed the readiness to strengthen exchanges between the two countries and further develop bilateral ties.
He wished the Third Berlin Asia-Pacific Weeks complete success, and added that the biennial event is a necessity in promoting the relations between the two countries.
In his speech, Chinese government representative Ding Guangen said the Berlin Asia-Pacific Weeks is a great event in cultural exchanges between the East and the West.
"It is an honor for China to bring its classical and modern culture to Germany as the regional focus at such a grand cultural gala," Ding said.
"I hope our presence here will add some flavor of oriental culture to the occasion, and arouse further interest in China among the German people," said Ding, who is member of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
Ding noted that cultural exchanges are essential for promoting understanding and friendship. "We can contribute to peace and progress in a global context, cultivate hospitality between nations and people, and make our planet a civilized and happy home," he added.
Both Chinese President Jiang Zemin and German President Johannes Rau sent their congratulations to the Asia-Pacific Weeks with a pledge to promote the common ground between the two countries in the 21st century, Ding said.
The biennial Asia-Pacific Weeks was initiated by the Berlin municipal government in 1997. 16 Asian and Pacific countries sent their delegations to this year's event, which includes 230 activities such as operas, concerts, dancing performances, exhibitions of ancient and modern arts, as well as cultural and economic forums. The event is scheduled to end on September 30.
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