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Remarks at the Inauguration Ceremony of the "Huawei-Rain-Wits University 5G Laboratory"

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Very glad to be invited to attend today's event. The "Huawei-Rain-Wits University 5G Laboratory" represents the latest outcome in China-South Africa cooperation in science and technology as well as digital economy. The Laboratory is a successful example of China-South Africa ICT cooperation extending to the upper reaches of the industrial chain. It will provide an innovative solution to South Africa's local problems by combining industry, education and research. I believe the Laboratory will play a leading and exemplary role in the development of 5G technology. Hereby, on behalf of the Chinese Embassy in South Africa, I would like to extend the warmest congratulations on the successful inauguration of the laboratory.

In recent years, under the personal guidance of H.E. President Xi Jinping and H.E. President Cyril Ramaphosa, the China-South Africa comprehensive strategic partnership has achieved steady growth. Our two countries have maintained close cooperation in such fields as politics, economy, science and technology as well as culture. The ICT infrastructure construction and connectivity is an important part of China-South Africa cooperation as well as an important foundation for South Africa to embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution. China firmly supports South Africa in taking digital economy as the core driving force for national development and exploring the path of self-sustainable development.

Confronted with the raging COVID-19, China and South Africa have been uniting and fighting as one against the pandemic, demonstrating the firm determination of our two countries to share weal and woe and tide over the difficult times together. This has also injected strong positive energy into China-Africa and global anti-pandemic cooperation.

Now both China and South Africa are facing the arduous task of defeating the virus, ensuring people's livelihood and restoring the economy. The just-concluded Fifth Plenary Session of the 19th CPC Central Committee adopted the 14th Five-Year Plan and the Long-Range Objectives for 2035. Recently South Africa also unveiled the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan.

Our two countries can take this opportunity to seek greater synergy between our development plans and explore new areas and forms for bilateral cooperation. China encourages Huawei and other high-tech companies to leverage their leading edge in 5G to strengthen cooperation with South African enterprises in digital economy's new business forms such as e-commerce, online education and block chains, so as to fuel our two countries' economic recovery and achieve win-win outcomes.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

As is known to all, Huawei is a 100 percent private enterprise as well as a multinational enterprise which has been growing up in the international market competition environment. Huawei has the largest number of 5G patented technologies in the world.

Now Huawei maintains good cooperative relations with telecom operators in more than 170 countries and regions. Since entering the African market in 1998, Huawei's business has covered 54 African countries, serving two thirds of the African population, cultivating more than 50,000 ICT talents and creating tens of thousands of jobs for Africa.

Huawei is a major partner for South Africa's telecommunications infrastructure construction and maintains close cooperative relations with all mainstream operators in South Africa. Huawei is committed to localization development. With the proportion of local employees in Huawei South Africa exceeding 50%, Huawei has won the title of Best Employer in South Africa for many years in a row. Going forward, Huawei South Africa plans to recruit 500 more local employees and train over 10,000 new ICT talents for South Africa in the coming five years.

However, we regret to see that certain countries, in violation of the market competition principles and international fairness and justice, have gone all out to suppress Huawei with trumped-up charges. Their act has been opposed by all countries that uphold justice all around the world. This blatant bullying act will not only be doomed to fail, but rather will make Huawei even stronger, because we believe justice will prevail.

The Global Initiative on Data Security launched by China once again demonstrates the determination of the Chinese government to oppose damaging the key infrastructure or stealing the important data from other countries with information technology, and requiring Chinese companies to abide by local laws and jointly safeguard global data security.

China highly appreciates South Africa's unbiased position of upholding fairness and justice on the Huawei issue. We are willing to work with South Africa to accelerate 5G application, safeguard an open, fair and non-discriminatory international innovation and business environment, jointly embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution and share the dividends of the development of the digital economy.

In closing, I would like to extend my congratulations again on the success of the inauguration ceremony of "Huawei-Rain-Wits University 5G Laboratory" again. I wish Huawei could achieve greater achievements in its cooperation with local partners.

Thank you very much!

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