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Speech on UKZN International Cultural Day


Speech on UKZN International Cultural Day

Consul General Mr. Liu Yantao

01-10- 2010


Your Honourable Programme Director,

I'm honored to attend the International Cultural Day hosted by UKZN. It is the third time I come here to attend this kind of event together with Chinese students. There are not so many Chinese students studying here but they are willing to take part in the meaningful activity, because they know that they represent Chinese elements in the diverse campus culture. I support Chinese students' positive response to the advocacy of UKZN, and also commend the organizer's foresight.

As you pointed out the theme of the event is to celebrate cultural, ethnic and racial diversity at campus of UKZN; educate one another on globalization and its impact on immigration; inculcate in one another the spirit of Ubuntu that overcomes biological, tribal, racial and ethnic boundaries i.e. to raise levels of consciousness in understanding, awareness and tolerance of inter-culture differences, share different cultural experiences; network with key stakeholders involved in dealing with ethical and human rights issues relevant to immigrants, refugees and foreign nationals.

In its endeavor to help cultivate students' outlook on culture pluralism, UKZN shoulders both academic and social responsibilities. This will not only help advance the academic progress and campus harmony of UKZN, but also contribute to the harmony and stability of South Africa, the Rainbow Land, and even further contribute to the world peace and harmony of the whole human beings.

University is a window of society and world civilization. University internationalization is a current tendency and trend, and also a driving force of universities' development. The word of University is sometimes explained as Universal Greatness Lies In Capacity. The Capacity includes diversity not only in academic views and thoughts of free discoveries, but also in religions, culture and people of different races. The world is colorful and so is the university. Every race and nationality has its own unique culture and strong points. In the background of globalization, it's inevitable for different cultures to engage one another. We hope this engagement is based on equality, tolerance and mutual respect, and helpful to learn from each other. Only in this way, could the Clashes of Civilization be avoided, and could it be guaranteed that either the small unit or big society is full of vigor and charm, and live together in peace and harmony. This is the kind of campus and world we are yearning for.

China is a country with 5000 years' civilization history. The Chinese nation has evolved in the process of merging different races, nationalities and cultures. At present China is a big harmonious family of 56 ethnic groups. We respect the unique culture and belief of every ethnic group and encourage different ethnic groups to respect, exchange with and learn from each other. In terms of culture and art, only its national uniqueness can make it universally popular and thus has great vitality. A Chinese saying goes that A Single Flower Does Not Make A Spring. It indicates harmonious coexistence and mutual prosperity between different cultures.

Chinese cultural outlook and its foreign policy coincide with concept initiated by UKZN on the International Cultural Day. China is an initiator of the famous Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, which consists of mutual respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty, mutual non-aggression, non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence. China is also an initiator of Harmonious World in the new era and firmly follows a path of peaceful development. Chinese people love peace and advocate equality, harmony and cooperation. Harmony and Cooperation are the essence of Chinese culture. We handle relations with other countries on the basis of political equality and mutual trust, economic win-win cooperation and cultural exchange and mutual-reference. We are willing to learn advanced experience from other nations. The Shanghai World Expo is a comprehensive exhibition of different culture and civilization and is also a good chance for learning. A big round of "World Culture Fever" is spreading all over China with the success of the promotion series of pavilions of South Africa and other foreign countries in Shanghai World Expo.

Lastly, I'd like to thank UKZN for its kind invitation, wish the International Cultural Day a complete success and also hope that students of South Africa and other countries learn more of Chinese culture.

Thank you!

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