The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
Remarks by President Obama and President Hu of the People's Republic of China at Official Arrival Ceremony
9:20 A.M. EST
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Good morning, everyone. President Hu, members of the Chinese delegation, on behalf of Michelle and myself, welcome to the White House. And on behalf of the American people, welcome to the United States.
Three decades ago, on a January day like this, another American President stood here and welcomed another Chinese leader for the historic normalization of relations between the United States and the People’s Republic of China. On that day, Deng Xiaoping spoke of the great possibilities of cooperation between our two nations.
Looking back on that winter day in 1979, it is now clear. The previous 30 years had been a time of estrangement for our two countries. The 30 years since have been a time of growing exchanges and understanding. And with this visit we can lay the foundation for the next 30 years.
At a time when some doubt the benefits of cooperation between the United States and China, this visit is also a chance to demonstrate a simple truth. We have an enormous stake in each other’s success. In an interconnected world, in a global economy, nations -- including our own -- will be more prosperous and more secure when we work together.
The United States welcomes China’s rise as a strong, prosperous and successful member of the community of nations. Indeed, China’s success has brought with it economic benefits for our people as well as yours, and our cooperation on a range of issues has helped advance stability in the Asia Pacific and in the world.
We also know this: History shows that societies are more harmonious, nations are more successful, and the world is more just, when the rights and responsibilities of all nations and all people are upheld, including the universal rights of every human being.
Mr. President, we can learn from our people. Chinese and American students and educators, business people, tourists, researchers and scientists, including Chinese Americans who are here today —- they work together and make progress together every single day. They know that even as our nations compete in some areas, we can cooperate in so many others, in a spirit of mutual respect, for our mutual benefit.
What Deng Xiaoping said long ago remains true today. There are still great possibilities for cooperation between our countries. President Hu, members of the Chinese delegation, let us seize these possibilities together. Welcome to the United States of America. Hwan-ying. (Applause.)
PRESIDENT HU: (As translated.) Mr. President, Mrs. Obama, ladies and gentlemen, dear friends, it gives me great pleasure to come to Washington and pay a state visit to the United States at the beginning of the new year, at the invitation of President Obama. At this point in time, let me extend, on behalf of the 1.3 billion Chinese people, sincere greetings and best wishes to the people of the United States.
I have come to the United States to increase mutual trust, enhance friendship, deepen cooperation, and push forward the positive, cooperative, and comprehensive China-U.S. relationship for the 21st century.
Over the past 32 years, since the establishment of diplomatic ties, the China-U.S. relationship has grown into one with strategic significance and global influence. Since President Obama took office, with concerted efforts of the two sides, our cooperation in various fields has produced fruitful results and our relations have achieved new progress. This has brought real benefits to our two peoples, and contributed greatly to world peace and development.
As we enter the second decade of the 21st century, the people of both China and the United States want to see further progress in our relations and people around the globe want to see greater prosperity in the world. Under the new circumstances, and in the face of new challenges, China and the United States share broad common interests and important common responsibilities.
We should adopt a long-term perspective, seek common ground while resolving differences, and work together to achieve sustained, sound, and steady development of our relations. I hope that through this visit, our two countries will advance the positive, cooperative, and comprehensive relationship, and open a new chapter in our cooperation as partners.
Our cooperation as partners should be based on mutual respect. We live in an increasingly diverse and colorful world. China and the United States should respect each other’s choice of development path and each other’s core interests. We should deepen mutual understanding through communication, increase mutual trust through dialogue, and expand common ground through exchanges.
Our cooperation as partners should be based on mutual benefit. China’s future and destiny are increasingly tied to those of the world and China-U.S. relations have become closer. Our two countries should seek to learn from each other through exchanges and achieve win-win progress through cooperation. This is the right approach for us to develop our relations.
Our cooperation as partners should be based on joint efforts to meet challenges. China and the United States should step up communication and coordination in international affairs, work together to counter the global challenges, and make a greater contribution to world peace and development.
Our cooperation as partners should be based on the extensive involvement of the people. The Chinese and American people cherish deep friendship towards each other, and they fought side by side at defining moments in history when the future and the destiny of mankind were at stake. The two peoples should extend exchanges and enhance friendship. This will offer a inexhaustible driving force for the growth of our relations.
Ladies and gentlemen, our world today is undergoing major development, major changes and major adjustments. To pursue peace, development and cooperation is the irresistible trend of our time. Let us seize the opportunity to forge ahead, hand in hand, and work together to enhance cooperation as partners, and let us work with all other countries to build a harmonious world of lasting peace and common prosperity.
Thank you once again, Mr. President, for your warm welcome. (Applause.)
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Thank you very much. Thank you.
9:38 A.M. EST