|Speech by Ambassador Zou Xiaoli at the Presentation of a Commemorative Series of Stamps on China-Greece Relations and Greek Version of the Book LIKI|
Your Excellency, Mr. Nikos Pappas, Minister of Digital Policy, Telecommunications & Media,
Your Excellency, Mr. Stavros Kontonis, Minister of Justice,
Your Excellency, Ms. Olga Gerovasili, Minister of Administrative Reconstruction,
Your Excellency, Mr. Panagiotis Kouroumblis, Minister of Shipping,
Your Excellency, Mr. Sokratis Famelos, Alternate Minister of Environment and Energy,
Your Excellency, Mr. Stergios Pitsiorlas, Deputy Minister of Economy and Development,
Your Excellency, Mr.Ioannis Amanatidis Deputy Foreign Minister,
Ms. Efrosini Stavraki, President of ELTA,
Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,
It is a great pleasure for me to be invited to the Presentation of a Commemorative Series of Stamps dedicated to China-Greece relationship and the Book LILI. It is especially important that the event takes place in the context of the 82nd Thessaloniki International Fair where China is the honoured country, for it aptly demonstrates the two pillars of China-Greece relations, i.e., economic cooperation and cultural exchanges. TIF is a platform not only for the exhibition of commodities and technologies, but also for the sharing of cultures and thoughts. As two nations that have given birth to ancient civilizations in the East and West, we are deeply aware that without the foundation of cultural exchanges, economic cooperation will lose its soul.
In recent years, China-Greece relations have become ever closer, as demonstrated by many significant and joyous events, from the year of maritime cooperation to the year of cultural exchanges and cultural industry cooperation, from the Ancient Civilizations Forum to the China-Hellenic Cities Forum, from China’s being the honoured country of the 82nd Thessaloniki International Fair to the soon-to-open direct flight between Beijing and Athens. All these are milestones in our bilateral relations, with some exerting a broader influence in the international arena, such as the Ancient Civilizations Forum. They testify to the extraordinary path our two countries have been following, respecting each other, treating each other as equals, seeking mutually-beneficial cooperation and promoting world peace. I would like to avail myself of this opportunity to thank ELTA for celebrating these events through the issuance of stamps and first-day covers, the circulation of which among the people will surely further deepen our traditional friendship. My special thanks also go to Dr. Christos Kaftezanis, the translator of the Greek version of LIKI as well as to the publisher of the book. The birth of the Greek version of LIKI is a huge gift for the year of China-Greece cultural exchanges.
Before concluding, I would like to point out that China is going to be at the center stage of the 82nd TIF as the honoured country, which is another milestone in China-Greece relations and in China’s cooperation with the Balkans and Southeast Europe. The Municipality of Thessaloniki has decorated the streets of the city with 5000 red Chinese lanterns. Today’s presentation ceremony for the commemorative stamps and LIKI will once again allow the Chinese delegations to amply experience the friendship and warmth of the Greek people. I am convinced that through the joint efforts of the two sides, China will be able to fulfill its role as the honoured country of the 82nd TIF and friendly cooperation between our two countries will turn into a new chapter.