China political leader welcomes increased cooperation with Jamaica

China political leader welcomes increased cooperation with Jamaica

BY BALFORD HENRY
Senior staff reporter
balfordh@jamaicaobserver.com

Thursday, December 05, 2019

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LEADER of the 14-member delegation from the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), Bateer (as a Mongolian Chinese he does not have a family name), says that the People's Republic of China (PRC) welcomes the opportunity to strengthen relationship and cooperation with Jamaica.

Bateer also welcomed the opportunity to meet and have discussions with Chinese Jamaicans, and Chinese investors who have been sharing the economic climate in Jamaica for several decades.

He also acknowledged being Mongolian and explained that the CPPCC is a body that brings together the various ethnic cultures of China, by allowing representatives of its people to meet and discuss their issues. He said that the Conference was like the Jamaican Parliament, particularly the Senate.

“We look forward to meeting other members of the Chinese community and to visit some of the projects we are involved with,” he told the opening session of a meeting with Jamaican parliamentarians at the Courtleigh Hotel and Suites in New Kingston on Tuesday.

President of the Senate, Thomas Tavares-Finson, who spoke on behalf of the Jamaican delegation, praised Bateer's commitment to working for the good of the people of China, which, he said, was demonstrated by his involvement in the field of governance throughout his career.

“It is with great pleasure that I welcome you and the members of your delegation, and I hope that your visit so far has been an enjoyable one,” Tavares Finson said, noting that Jamaica and the PRC have enjoyed almost a half-century of diplomatic relations.

“The linchpin of our relationship has mutual respect between our two states, and the commitment by both countries to respecting the sovereignty of states. We were also among the first countries to recognise the 'One-China' policy — a policy to which we remain firmly committed,” he added.

“The relationship between the People's Republic of China and Jamaica has endured the many vagaries of the international landscape, and it is my sincere wish that our relationship will become even stronger,” he added.

He also commended Ambassador Tian Xi for his “tireless efforts in promoting harmonious relations between our two countries”.

The parliamentarians had lunch at Courtleigh Hotel and Suites in New Kingston after the meeting and visited Gordon House.

In a release on Monday, the Houses of Parliament noted that Bateer's visit is a part of the effort to promote cooperation between the legislative bodies of Jamaica and the PRC, and to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.

He has served as minister of the National Ethnic Affairs Commission since 2016 and has held the post of vice-chairman of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference since 2018.

Among the Jamaican parliamentarians present were: Kamina Johnson Smith, minister of foreign affairs and foreign trade and leader of the government in the Senate; Lisa Hanna, Opposition spokesperson on foreign affairs; and Horace Dalley, Opposition spokesman on labour.


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