Build a Green and Beautiful Homeland for All

Xi Jinping: The Governance of China III Updated: 2021-12-31

Build a Green and Beautiful Homeland for All* 

April 28, 2019 

Your Excellencies Heads of State and Government, and your spouses, 

Your Excellencies Secretary General of the Bureau International des Expositions and President of the International Association of Horticultural Producers, 

Your Excellencies Diplomatic Envoys and Representatives of International Organizations, 

Ladies and gentlemen, 

Dear friends,

"The land bathes in the spring sunshine, and the wind sends the aromas of grass and flowers."1 It is apt to quote these lines from a classic poem to depict Beijing in April – spring has come back and all lives are reviving. I am pleased to be here with all of you at the foot of the Great Wall by the Guishui River to witness the opening of the 2019 Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition. 

On behalf of the Chinese government and people, and also in my own name, I would like to extend our warmest welcome to all of you, and our heartfelt thanks to all friends who are supporting and participating in this exhibition. 

Themed "Live Green, Live Better", the Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition aims to promote respect for the environment and a better life in harmony with nature. It is our hope that this expo park, designed to blend into its splendid surrounding landscape, will demonstrate to people in all corners of the world China's vision of green development.

Ladies and gentlemen, 

Dear friends, 

Home to the Chinese nation, this vast and splendid land of China has nurtured a brilliant 5,000-year civilization and its philosophy of harmony between humanity and nature.

Advancing eco-environmental progress has become part of China's overall plan for national development, and building a beautiful country continues to inspire the Chinese people. As China steps up its conservation efforts, a country with more blue skies, lush mountains and lucid waters will emerge.

The rise or fall of a society is dependent on its relationship with nature if we see it from a historical perspective. Industrialization, while generating unprecedented material wealth, has caused serious damage to nature. Development without thought to the future of the Earth is not a sustainable way to progress – like killing the goose that lays the golden eggs or draining the pond to get all the fish. Green development that focuses on harmony with nature and eco-friendly progress shows the way to the future.

Ladies and gentlemen, 

Dear friends, 

We see myriads of glittering stars when we look up at the night sky, but the Earth is the only home we have. We must protect this planet as we protect our own eyes, and cherish Mother Nature the way we treasure life. We must preserve what gives our planet life and embrace green development.

– We should pursue harmony between humanity and nature. Lush mountains, vast tracts of forest, blue skies, green fields, singing birds, and blossoming flowers offer more than visual beauty. They are the basis for our future development. Nature punishes those who exploit and plunder it brutally, and rewards those who use and protect it carefully. We must maintain the overall balance of the Earth's ecosystems, not only to ensure that future generations can continue to access material wealth, but also to protect their right to enjoy the wonders of the natural world.

– We ought to achieve economic prosperity through green development. Green is the color of nature. I have always said that clear waters and green mountains are invaluable assets, and that eco-environmental improvement leads to greater productivity. Healthy ecosystems promise boundless economic potential, generate steady returns, and contribute to economic and social sustainability.

– We need to foster a love of nature. Well-measured exploration and use of resources is the key to eco-environmental progress. We should encourage a healthy lifestyle that is simple, green and low-carbon, and reject extravagant and excessive practices. Additionally, it is essential to raise people's awareness of environmental and ecological protection, and develop an environmental governance system in which the whole of society participates, so that the eco-environment will become a primary focus of daily life. We need to advocate the value of green development grounded in respect and care for nature so that blue skies, green fields and clear waters will be deeply cherished by all.

– We should adopt a sound approach. In environmental governance we should follow the laws of nature, make holistic and well-informed plans, do what is appropriate in light of local circumstances, and create harmonious ecosystems in which all elements coexist in tandem with each other. Human wisdom is essential to sustaining the dynamism of the Earth, our common homeland. Although environmental governance is an arduous task, we will ultimately obtain the expected results as long as we take the right steps. We must press ahead with a sense of urgency and perseverance to achieve our goals.

– We need to join hands to meet common challenges. A beautiful homeland is the shared aspiration of humanity. In the face of environmental challenges, all countries are a community with a common stake, and no country can remain aloof. Only together can we effectively address climate change, marine pollution, biological conservation, and other global environmental issues, and achieve the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Only concerted efforts can drive home the idea of green development and bring about steady progress in building a global eco-civilization.

Ladies and gentlemen, 

Dear friends, 

Many of the guests here also attended the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation which closed yesterday. We reached an important consensus at the forum that our Belt and Road cooperation will build a road of green development, in addition to a road of open development. China is ready to work with all other countries to create a better homeland and a global community of shared future.

Ladies and gentlemen, 

Dear friends, 

Every generation has its own mission. Our efforts to conserve our ecosystems will benefit not only this generation, but many more to come. By acting now on our own initiative, we will pass on the baton of conservation to future generations. 

I now declare the 2019 International Horticultural Exhibition open.

* Speech at the opening ceremony of the International Horticultural Exhibition 2019 in Beijing.


1 Du Fu: "Two Quatrains" (Jue Ju Er Shou).

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