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China Will Always Share the Same Outlook and Destiny with the Pacific Island Countries

--Remarks by H.E. Mr. Qian Bo, Ambassador of China to Fiji at the Opening Ceremony of the Capacity Building Workshop on Juncao Technology and Its Support to Achieve Sustainable Agriculture and SDGs for Pacific Small Island Developing States

(June 4th, 2018, Nadi)

Honorable Minister Ms. Mereseini Vuniwaqa,
Chief of SIDS Unit, Division for Sustainable Development Goals, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, United Nations, Mr. Sai Navoti,
Professor Lin Zhanxi, Chief Scientist of the National Engineering Research Center of Juncao Technology of China,
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies, gentlemen and friends,

Ni Sa Bula and good morning!

Today, I am extremely pleased to attend the Opening Ceremony of the Capacity Building Workshop on Juncao Technology and its Support to Achieve Sustainable Agriculture and SDGs for the Pacific Small Island Developing States hosted by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations, the Government of Fiji and China Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University. The Juncao Technology Demonstration Center Project is a China-Aid project recommended by Chinese President H.E. Mr. Xi Jinping to Honorable Prime Minister Bainimarama. This project starts from September 2014, and has entered the second phase of technical cooperation. It is implemented by the Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University and has made great achievements. Here, I would like to pay tribute to Professor Lin Zhanxi and his team for their outstanding performance over the years, and thank the Government of Fiji for its unswerving cooperation.

The Juncao project is a multi-functional project. It can be applied in mushroom cultivation, livestock forage, biogas and soil preservation. Juncao Technology can help small island countries develop sustainable agriculture, reduce poverty, achieve Sustainable Development Goals, address the challenges of climate change and promote renewable energy. At present, the project has successfully cultivated 11 species of mushrooms and started the history of mushroom production in Fiji. The cultivation of Juncao grass helps a number of pasture farmers to alleviate the lack of green forage in the dry season. Up to now, the project has trained nearly a thousand Fijian farmers and technicians. The Chinese side will help Fiji to establish Juncao industry which has a promising future.

Ladies and gentlemen,

There is an old saying in China which says "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." China's development assistance provides not only materials and infrastructure, but also capacity building. Apart from the Juncao Technology Demonstration Center project, China also implemented the Rice Technical Cooperation Project to help Fiji revive the rice industry, achieve self-sufficiency in rice production, ensure food security, and promote the mechanization of agricultural production. Each year, the Chinese side provides nearly one hundred training opportunities for Fiji, covering areas such as agriculture, climate change, and government management. Up to now, more than one thousand Fijian officials and technicians have been to China to attend various seminars and technical training courses.

Ladies and gentlemen,

There will be no development of the world without the development of agriculture and rural areas in the Pacific Small Island Developing States including Fiji. The 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals cannot be realized without the increase of income for vulnerable groups such as farmers, women, and youth.

We are pleased to note that under the strong leadership of Fijian government, the rural areas in Fiji have made big strides in economic and social development. Fiji has been playing a leading role in fighting against climate change, promoting Pacific Blue Economy, and addressing the reasonable appeal of small island countries. The "5 Year & 20 year National Development Plan" formulated by the Fijian government consists of two prongs, which are "Inclusive Social-Economic Development" and "Transforming Strategic Thrusts". It aims to eradicate poverty, increase farmer's income and foster new industries. The China-Aid Juncao Project is helping Fiji to achieve these targets and is warmly welcome by the Fijian government and people.

Ladies and gentlemen,

China and Fiji are both developing countries. The Chinese government has all along respected Fiji's path of development conforming to its own national conditions. China's development cooperation to Fiji is selfless and sincere without conditions. China's development cooperation to Fiji is unswerving and will not be interrupted by the changing international and regional landscapes. It targets the wellbeing of Fijian people. China's development cooperation to Fiji upholds justice while pursuing shared interests, and has set a good example of mutual support between developing countries under the framework of south-south cooperation. China's development cooperation to Fiji showcases the international responsibilities of China as a major country and the sincere aspiration to build a community with a shared future for mankind. China will always be a steadfast and reliable development partner of Fiji and other Pacific small island developing countries.

China's "One Belt, One Road" initiative adheres to the principle of achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration. China is willing to coordinate its development strategy with those of the South Pacific island countries, seek and expand mutual interests, and better serve the 2030 sustainable development agenda and goals. We hope that the South Pacific island countries can make full use of the two billion US dollar Assistance Fund for South-South Cooperation and the one billion US dollar China-UN Peace and Development Trust Fund established by China, make full use of institutes such as China Center for International Knowledge on Development and the Institute of South-South Cooperation and Development, and enhance the ability of self development.

Not long ago, the Chinese government set up a new development agency, the State International Development Cooperation Agency. The new agency aims to better coordinate China's foreign aid, reform and optimize the foreign aid approach, and streamline the "Belt and Road" international cooperation with other countries in the world. In the first quarter of this year, China achieved 6.8% GDP growth and injected a strong impetus to global economy. With the development of China, China will participate more actively in the development of South Pacific countries and gradually increase development assistance. China will always share the same outlook and destiny with the Pacific island countries and contribute to the collective rise of the developing world.

Finally, I wish this workshop a complete success. Thank you and Vinaka!

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