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Ambassador Han Jing's Interview with the Surinamese Television Foundation
2021-10-03 01:56

On September 23, 2021, Mr. Han Jing, Chinese ambassador to Suriname, received an interview with STVS and expressed his views on the relationship between China and Suriname. The full text is as follows:

Q: Suriname and the People's Republic of China have maintained diplomatic ties for over 45 years. You are the 14th ambassador appointed to Suriname. How will the relationship be further strengthened between Suriname and the People's Republic of China?

A: Suriname is one of the first Caribbean countries to establish diplomatic relations with China. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations 45 years ago, the bilateral relationship has been upgraded to strategic cooperative partnership. For the past 45 years, the cooperations between our two countries have achieved substantial results and benefited people and two countries. In the future,we will improve mutual political trust, deepen the practical cooperations under the framework of Belt and Road Initiative and strengthen cultural exchanges. I think two countries can communicate and coordinate closely on international issues such as climate change. As the new Chinese ambassador to Suriname, I will exert the utmost effort to strengthen the China-Suriname friendship, advance it to a new high level, and bring more benefits to the people of two countries.

Q:Last month you arrived in Suriname. Are you delegated with a special mission?

A: Well, I think my mission is simple and clear. That is to serve as a messenger of friendship and a bridge of communication. Upon my arrival, I have found people here are very nice to me and to the Chinese Embassy, and have strong wish to cooperate. At present, both China and Suriname are in a critical period of national development. Recently, President Xi Jinping delivered video speech to CELAC Summit held in Mexico, sent a strong message that China is willing to work with Latin American and Caribbean countries to overcome difficulties together and jointly create opportunities to build a community of shared future between China and Latin America. So it is expected that China and Suriname could enhance exchanges of experience on governance, achieve mutual beneficial cooperation and joint development.

Q: If you looked the relationship between Suriname and China, China had supported Suriname in many ways. Which project is on the agenda that will be fullfilled in coming days?

A: China has long been providing support and assistance to Suriname, which is our good friend and partner, within our capacity. There are several projects in the discussions between the governments. Here I'd like to raise up for example like the 350 houses project, we would like to provide agricultural equipments as required, we would like to assist to build the Agricultural Technical Cooperation Center. I think some programs are in good progress already, we hope it could bear fruits in Suriname.

Q: Suriname has a large debt to China and is in financial issues. According to the IMF, China must approve the debt restructuring. How do you improve it?

A:China acknowledges that Suriname is facing a temporary difficult situation. We understand and support the effort of the government of Suriname to restore fiscal sustainability and macroeconomic stability. Chinese government and relevant financial agencies have all expressed their support to Suriname in applying for IMF loans. The relevant agencies of the two countries have already started talks on debt restructuring in a constructive way, and look forward to reaching a feasible arrangement as soon as possible.

Q: The former president paid a visit to your president. Is it possible that President Santokhi also meet with President Xi Jingping?

A: High-level exchanges play an important leading role in the development of bilateral relations. However, COVID-19 is still spreading globally at present and has an impact on international exchanges. We welcome the president to visit China at the time of convenience for both sides when the pandemic is well controlled.

Q: You have mentioned the cooperation between China and other countries is based on win-win principle, critics say China is funding the little countries so they can get benefits from that. What is your opinion on that? 

A: I cannot take such groundless accusations. We always say "the truth reveals itself." China's development brings opportunities to the whole world, not a threat or challenge. China always stands with developing countries, insists that all countries are equal regardless of their size, never interfere into other countries' internal affairs, never attach any political conditions to its aid. On Tuesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping made a statement at the general debate of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly via video, in which he proposed a Global Development Initiative, stressing that we need to care more about the special needs of developing countries, and declaring that China has pledged an additional three billion US dollars of international assistance in the next three years to help developing countries in responding to COVID-19 and promoting economic and social recovery. You may find that cooperation with China has brought tangible results and benefits to the people of the Caribbean countries. It is for the peoples of Caribbean to judge their relations with China.

Q: Ambassador you made a gesture to the first television company in Suriname, can you indicate what the motivation was for doing so and to what extent is there a possibility to develop a closer relationship between the STVS and the embassy?

A: Well, you know, the media is regarded as "the fourth power" and journalists are called "the uncrowned king". It's natural for us to attach great importance to media. The task of Chinese Embassy is to advance the friendly exchanges, to help Surinamese people to get better knowledge and understanding of China. The media plays a very important role in this regard. Thus, we are open to cooperate with various media, and hope we can establish good relations with them.

Q: There is a project called "Chinese in me", which helps some Surinamese from China find their roots in China. What do you think of the contributions among these projects?

A: Friendship of the people holds the key to sound state-to-state relations.We're glad to see that the overseas Chinese have melted well into your society and the Chinese enterprises have also played an active role in your economy. So our embassy encourages and helps them to make more contributions to consolidate and strengthen the partnership between our two countries.

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