On January 21, Ambassador Qin Gang accepted the plaque of recognition and a commemorative jacket from Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) and the International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA). Present at the ceremony were representatives of Massport, the ILA and COSCO Shipping (North America).
Massport maritime director Michael Meyran gave warm remarks on behalf of Massport. He said, the 20-year partnership between COSCO Shipping and the Port of Boston has created thousands of jobs across Massachusetts and the New England Six States region. This 20-year partnership has been the perfect model of how to do business between the United States and China. We look forward to continuing this partnership of business cooperation for the long future. Meyran presented the plaque of recognition to Ambassador Qin Gang, which is inscribed with the words “The Port of Boston Salutes Ambassador Qin Gang Chinese Ambassador to the United States of America. In Recognition of the Partnership and Contribution of the People’s Republic of China to the American Workers and American Business Community of the New England Six States.”
ILA vice president Bernie O’Donnell, representing more than 9,000 longshoremen at the Port of Boston and their families, presented a commemorative jacket to Ambassador Qin and expressed appreciation to Chinese companies for their long-term contributions to Boston.
Ambassador Qin Gang gladly accepted the plaque of recognition and put on the jacket. In his remarks, Ambassador Qin said, I wish to welcome all of you to the Chinese Embassy from afar and your visit brings fresh air to Washington DC. The honor you present to me belongs to Chinese companies. It is also shared by all those devoted to the cooperation between COSCO Shipping and the Port of Boston.
Ambassador Qin pointed out that this year marks the 20th anniversary for COSCO Shipping to open a direct vessel service to Boston. COSCO’s cooperation with the Port of Boston has brought jobs and vitality to the local community, and also helped Chinese companies improve their operation, which has been an example of the win-win economic and trade cooperation between China and the US. In China’s 40-plus years of reform and opening-up, the US has got deeply involved in China’s development, and also benefited a lot from it. Our trade has provided many quality but inexpensive products for American consumers, and supported 2.6 million American jobs. China and the US have long been bound together by our shared interests.
Ambassador Qin stressed that this year marks the 50th anniversary of President Nixon’s visit to China. We have learned from the past five decades that China-US cooperation can deliver many things good for both countries and the whole world; it can also bring tangible benefits and opportunities to places like the Port of Boston, to our longshoremen, and to all of us. If China and the US enter into conflict and confrontation, if we fight a trade war or a new “Cold War”, it will be a political tragedy that benefits no one. It will cause unbearable cost to each of us, to people like you and me. Faced with all these global challenges, fighting the pandemic, restoring growth, stabilizing industrial chain and supply chain, and addressing climate change, China and the US have no better choice than solidarity and cooperation. This is also the expectation of the international community. Our two countries should keep in mind what brought us together 50 years ago, implement the agreement of the two Presidents, follow the principles of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation and take our relations back to the right track. This is also to give the world some long-awaited stability and certainty.
The event was broadcast live online by CGTN.
In March 2002, COSCO Shipping opened direct vessel service from Chinese mainland to the Port of Boston upon agreement of the two sides. Over the past 20 years of successful operation, it has not only saved 9,000 jobs in the Port of Boston, but also created another 400,000 jobs, which has been highly praised by the local government and people in the US.