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China’s future more worth expecting: Korean scholar

By Chen Shangwen (People's Daily)    09:49, November 04, 2019

Building on past successes, China has achieved sustained economic and social development through advancing reform and opening-up, Lee Hee-ok, head of the Sungkyun Institute of China Studies said in an interview with People’s Daily.

The file photo shows Lee Hee-ok, head of the Sungkyun Institute of China Studies at the reception in celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China on September 30, 2019.

Lee attended the grand celebration held to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in Beijing on October 1. He, who is also a professor of political science at Sungkyunkwan University in Seoul, said he was impressed by the mass pageantry, which was a part of the celebration.

The mass pageantry consisted of three chapters: Founding and Construction of the People’s Republic, Reform and Opening-up, and Great Rejuvenation, representing China’s past, present and future respectively.

The Sungkyun Institute of China Studies Lee founded in 2012 is a famous China research institute in South Korea. As a scholar of China studies, Lee has written many books on China that have become an important channel for people in South Korea to learn about China.

The 70th anniversary of the founding of New China marks an important year in the development course of the PRC. Through their hard work and struggling, the Chinese people have reaped remarkable achievements and demonstrated the unique advantages of socialism with Chinese characteristics and the strong cohesion of the Chinese nation.

Lee also attended the night gala held on October 1 to mark New China’s birthday.

“The high-tech light show showcased China’s prosperity. At that night, everyone was singing and dancing. It was a festival for the people,” Lee said, adding that it was a very valuable experience for him to have the opportunity to present at the celebration of the 70th birthday of the PRC and gain a deeper understanding of China’s development.

Lee first visited China 30 years ago. He recalled that all he saw from the window of the train running from Dalian to Shenyang, both in northeast China’s Liaoning province, were plains and cornfields. When he woke up from a nap, he was still on the way.

In a train trip Lee made in January 2019, it took him less than two hours to get to Dandong from Shenyang by high-speed train. “Scientific and technological progress has shortened the travel time between the cities,” Lee said.

Lee also recalled that once he was at an airport in China almost 20 years ago, he was told that his flight was cancelled because there were not enough passengers. “Now China is home to the world’s busiest airports and air travelling has become the most popular mode of travel in China,” Lee said, adding that this was unimaginable back then.

Over the past 30 years, Lee has visited China for more than 200 times. He said that it takes lots of time to keep his studies abreast with China’s development and analyze it as the country develops in such rapid speed.

“China’s development is never a coincidence, but is deeply rooted in its national conditions and the Chinese characteristics. It is a result of setting the right directions for future development, rolling out policies and measures and implementing them,” Lee pointed out.

The Chinese government has a strong capability to strengthen top-level design, makes development strategies that evolve with the time and seek truth from facts, constantly improves modernization of its governance and carries forward excellent traditional Chinese culture. It also pays attention to environmental protection and promotes coexistence between nature and human beings. These constitute the secret of China’s development success.

China is willing to work with people in all countries for creating a world bathed in peace and development, Chinese President Xi Jinping said at the reception in celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China on September 30, 2019.

Lee, who attended the reception, said he once again felt the determination of China to continue to advocate peace, development and opening-up. “Today’s China has the conditions to transform from a country with capabilities to one with charm,” Lee said.

“China always summarizes its successful experience and objectively evaluates its current achievements. Besides, it also cultivates growth impetus inside, constantly enhances the well-being of its people, and further deepens reform and expands opening-up. I believe China’s future is more worth expecting!”

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

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