The rejuvenation of the Chinese Nation is unstoppable and the common development and prosperity of Hong Kong and Macao together with the Chinese Mainland can foresee an ever-brighter future; Chinese President Xi Jinping.

While addressing a gathering in celebration of the 20th anniversary of Macao’s return to China on December 20, 2019, Chinese President Xi Jinping said:

I encourage you to build on what Macao has accomplished and take all undertakings in the Macao Special Administrative Region to the next level.

Break new ground to better realize sustained and sound economic development. A long-term perspective must be adopted when drawing up development plans. With the goal of becoming “One Center, One Platform, One Base” in mind, Macao needs to develop well-conceived plans, adopt a holistic and coordinated approach, and implement the plans progressively.

On the basis of Macao’s realities and through rigorous feasibility studies, the Macao needs to identify the main focus and key projects for appropriately diversifying its economy. It needs to take a multi-pronged strategy in terms of policy, human resources and financial support, and resolve the most difficult issues through synergy.

Macao needs to carve out its role in national strategies, seize the opportunities provided by the Belt and Road Initiative and the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, better leverage its own strengths, and sharpen its competitive edge.

What is particularly important is to ensure good collaboration with Zhuhai in developing Hengqin, which will create immense space and new momentum for Macao’s long-term development.

Continue to put people first and better ensure and improve their living standards. It must be clearly understood that the goal of development is to make people’s lives better. Thus the Macao needs to adopt institutional arrangements that are fairer, more equitable, and beneficial to all, so that the fruits of development can be shared by all in the community.

To foster a better living environment and higher quality of life, Macao needs to combine its development needs with the people’s needs and improve public infrastructure relating to transport, energy, environmental protection, information, and urban safety and security.

Macao needs to actively respond to public concerns, address prominent issues in housing, health care, and care for the elderly, and scale up assistance and support to the vulnerable.

It is also important to further develop education and put in place the best possible education system, so as to create a more conducive environment for children and young people to grow and live to their full potential.

Persist in an inclusive approach and further promote social harmony and stability. The core value of loving the motherland and Macao needs to be upheld and encouraged so that everyone is mobilized to contribute to Macao’s development. Community organizations in Macao should be strengthened, and those that embrace the core values can serve as bridges between the government and the people.

Macao’s tradition of valuing unity and consultation must be preserved. Matters should be addressed through consultation and settled through coordination. Societal problems must be properly addressed for the greater good of social harmony.

As a place where Chinese and Western cultures meet, Macao is well positioned to promote international people-to-people exchanges and mutual learning between cultures.

With the return of Hong Kong and Macao, the handling of affairs in the two special administrative regions is strictly China’s internal business. No external force has any right to dictate to us.

The government and the people of China have a rock-firm determination to uphold our national sovereignty, security and development interests. We will never tolerate any external interference in Hong Kong and Macao affairs.

In the early 1980s when Deng Xiaoping and other leaders of his generation put forward the great vision of “One Country, Two Systems”, they were of the firm belief that it was the right policy and would work, succeed, and win public support. For the past 30 years, the success of “One Country,Two Systems” has won widespread recognition throughout the world.

Naturally, steady improvements are needed in the institutional arrangements as the policy continues to be applied. We have every confidence that we Chinese, including our fellow compatriots in Hong Kong and Macao, have the wisdom and ability to better practice and develop “One Country, Two Systems”, carry out the necessary improvements in institutional arrangements, and achieve still greater success in governing the two special administrative regions.

The rejuvenation of the Chinese nation is unstoppable, and the common development and prosperity of Hong Kong and Macao together with the Chinese mainland can foresee an ever-brighter future.

Author: Shen Ting
Editor’s Note: The article reflects the author’s opinion only, and not necessarily the views of editorial opinion of Belt & Road News.