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Premier Li gives speech to Britain’s 48 Group Club’s new year event

Updated: Feb 04,2021 02:25 PM

Premier Li Keqiang gave a speech to the 2021 new year celebration event of Britain’s 48 Group Club, via video link on Feb 3.

Sixty-eight years ago, far-sighted personages from the British business community represented by Mr Jack Perry broke the ice, opening the door to trade between China and the UK and left valuable spiritual wealth for friendly exchanges between the two countries, Premier Li said at the event.

Reviewing the "icebreaking" spirit is to get inspiration by recollecting the history and also a practice to look forward to the future, he added.

He also said as long as the “icebreaking” spirit is passed down from generation to generation and the original aspiration of promoting friendship and development remains unchanged, there is no ice that cannot be broken, no estrangement that cannot be removed.

The year 2020 was an extraordinary year for China, the UK and the whole world, so it is a hard-won achievement for China to reach 2.3 percent economic growth, the Premier said.

Serious challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic remain, and uncertainties still exist in the world economy. In 2021, China will maintain the continuity, stability and sustainability of macro policies, and make policies more scientific and targeted, keeping the economic performance within an appropriate range, said the Premier, adding that the fundamentals of China’s economy will be more solid with persistent efforts.

The UK is China’s important partner in Europe, and China values Sino-UK relations as always, the Premier said. It is expected that the two sides can stick to mutually beneficial and win-win cooperation on the basis of mutual respect and equality, expand the positive aspects of cooperation and enhance stability in relations.

China is willing to work with the UK and the rest of the world to win the battle against the pandemic, and promote recovery and growth of the world economy to meet global challenges, he added.

Britain’s 48 Group Club has been holding the new year celebration event since 2009, establishing a platform for exchanges between people from all walks of life in China and the UK.

This year’s event was held via video link for the first time, with over 1,000 people from the UK in attendance.