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Ambassador Luo Linquan delivered a speech at the Deloitte Non-Executive Annual Meeting
Dear Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, friends from business circles,
Good Evening. As the only Ambassador presented tonight, I am delighted to attend the Deloitte Non-Executive Annual Meeting.
I visited Ireland 10 years ago. The friendly and kind people and the beautiful landscape left a very deep impression on me. Now I am here again, as an Ambassador, and I have widely exchanged ideas with the local people from all walks of life in less than 3 months. People's confidence in the economic prospect and courage of making efforts together increase my love and respect for this country.
According to my knowledge, some of you have established business in China and some are quite interested in finding new opportunities. Today I would like to brief you the current situation, prospect and potential opportunities on economic and trade cooperation between China and Ireland.
Since China and Ireland established diplomatic relations in 1979, the friendly co-operative relations between our two countries have developed steadily and the economic and trade cooperation have expanded continuously. The China Ireland friendship has taken root, and the mutual beneficial cooperation brings substantial benefit to the two peoples. According to China's statistics, the bilateral trade amounted to 5.4 billion US dollars in 2010, which was 1049 times more than that in 1979, up 3.9 percent compared with the same period of the previous year, with 3.41 billion US dollars of Irish exports to China, up 5.9 percent, and 1.99 billion US dollars of Irish imports from China, up 0.6 percent. China has ranked No.1 among Ireland's Asian trade partners for 4 successive years and Ireland has enjoyed a trade surplus with China for two years. As for this year, we see a very positive momentum too. According to China's statistics, the bilateral trade amounted to 3.76 billion US dollars in the first 8 months, up 6.4 percent compared with the same period of the previous year, with 2.41 billion US dollars of Irish exports to China, up 6.4 percent, and 1.36 billion US dollars of Irish imports from China, up 6.2 percent.
As for the mutual investment, the contracted investment from Ireland to China grew by 64.4 percent over the same period of previous year, and by the end of 2010, Irish investment projects in China totaled 220, with contracted funds of 1.04 billion US dollars. The Chinese accumulated investment to Ireland has reached more than 130 million US dollars and the figure is still increasing.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I would like to set forward the following points on the prospect and potential opportunities on bilateral economic and trade cooperation.
First of all, with a solid political foundation, China and Ireland have strong interest in developing economic and trade cooperation. In recent years, the deepening bilateral relations and friendship between the two peoples have provided a solid foundation for the cooperation. Meanwhile, the two governments have sent investment trade promotion delegations to each other, and substantial cooperation on different levels and scales in various fields have been witnessed. Especially recently, we notice discussions on promoting bilateral economic and trade cooperation everywhere in Ireland, from government officials to civilians and from business circles to media, indicating strong interest in deepening bilateral cooperation.
Secondly, business environment for bilateral economic and trade cooperation is very good. China enjoys stable political system, society and economy, with complete legal system and vast potential market, providing great opportunities and potential for Irish entrepreneurs conducting investment and trade cooperation. Meanwhile, since the reform and opening up, many strong Chinese enterprises, with high technology and sufficient capital, have grown up. They are qualified to do business here.
Thirdly, the two economies can be complementary to each other, which brings opportunities for cooperation. China's industrialization and urbanization have been developing rapidly, and its consumption and industrial structure upgrade brings great investment and consumption demand. Meanwhile, Ireland is very competitive in the fields of high-tech industries such as software development, IT and communication and biological pharmacy, which is deserved to be learned by China. Other industries such as clean energy technology like ocean and wind energy, green industries, experience of the Small and Medium Size Firms development and service industries management system, match what China needs for the future economic development as well.
Dear friends, the two peoples enjoy good friendship and the two countries have a promising future for cooperation. The Chinese Embassy, as always, will be acting as a bridge to enhance mutual understanding and bilateral cooperation. There is an old saying in Ireland, "You will never plow a field by turning it over in your mind." Let's grab the opportunities, try bravely and make joint effort, to build a bright future for China Ireland economic and trade cooperation.
Thank you.
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