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Chinese across New Zealand celebrate PRC's 70th anniversary

(Xinhua)    08:11, September 23, 2019

AUCKLAND, Sept. 22 -- Chinese communities' representatives from the south and north islands of New Zealand gathered together to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China on Sunday in New Zealand's biggest city Auckland.

The event started with the China national flag-raising ceremony. Then the organizer released elegant white doves to delivery the best wishes to the motherland.

Steven Wong, the president of the Chinese Association of New Zealand, who initiated and organized the event, welcomed the leaders of Chinese communities across New Zealand in his opening speech.

"This year is the 70th anniversary of China. Please allow me to say happy birthday to our motherland. Best wishes for the prosperity of our homeland, for China and New Zealand friendship and the peace of the world," he said.

Zhou Wei, vice Chinese consul-general in Auckland, said "on behalf of the Chinese Consulate General in Auckland, I would like to thank all friends here and all over New Zealand for your great support and valuable contribution to the development of China-New Zealand relations."

"The seventy years after the founding of a new China has ushered in the best development in China's history. China has developed from a poor and lagged-behind country to the world's second-largest economy, the largest industrial producer, the largest goods trader, the largest foreign exchange reserve country and the largest trading partner and export market of nearly 130 countries and regions including New Zealand," Zhou highlighted.

Phil Goff, Auckland mayor, said in Chinese, "Happy National Day! Congratulation to the people, and the government of the People's Republic of China, for the great achievements over the past 70 years."

In 2008, then New Zealand Trade Minister Phil Goff signed the historic Free Trade Agreement between New Zealand and China in Beijing, making New Zealand the first developed country to negotiate an FTA with China. It is New Zealand's largest trade deal since the 1983 Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement with Australia.

Goff recalled the history and stressed the hard work and strong values of New Zealand Chinese. "Thank you for being the bridge to build a strong relationship between New Zealand and the People's Republic of China. Our two-way trade with China now tops 28 billion New Zealand dollars in 2018. For many years in a row, China has been New Zealand's largest trading partner, largest source of international students and second largest source of overseas tourists," he said.

Peter Goodfellow, the president of the New Zealand National Party, the biggest party in New Zealand Parliament, acknowledged the greatness of having Chinese and Chinese communities in New Zealand.

"It is great that we all acknowledged how far China has come in the past 70 years, what a great story it is."

Then over 700 people from the main cites including Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch enjoyed a celebration gala.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Liang Jun, Bianji)

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