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Speech at the Meeting by Zhang Hongren


  Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.

  The past five years of the china council will leave a long-lasting memory in every one of us. The council itself is a product of china's Reform and Open Policy, and a product of the global concern over environmental problems. Now it has been recognised that we have only one earth and a common future, and therefore must do our best to protect the environment. China has on fifth of the world population. Protecting China's environment will not only benefit the 1.2billion Chinese people, both of the present and the future generations, but also will contribute to global environmental protection. Our experience will be valuable to the whole world, especially to the third world.

  I have had the pleasure of being a council Member for the past five years. The past five years has proved that the council is a courageous and unprecedented experiment, and has achieved great success. The Countries owes its success, first of all, to the high-level Council Members from various countries and institutions. They brought into China their rich and diverse experiences acquired elsewhere in the world, conducted investigation and research on China's environmental problems in a serious manner as if they were dealing with their own problems, and proposed a number of pertinent and frank recommendations. Their recommendations are very helpful to China. I have personally learned a lot from them.

  Our success has another basis. During the five years, I feel that the Chinese Government was very serious towards the activities of the Council. The recommendations raised by the council were conveyed annually to the Government by Chairman Dr.song Jian, and attracted much attention and support from the high-level people of the Chinese Government. It is also worth mentioning that the council has a structural advantage: the Chinese Members come from the various departments of the Government, therefore many recommendations of the Council are able to be put in to effect by the participating departments. The Government's role is undoubtedly very great.

  During the five years, we have gained a lot, in the first place, we have deepened our mutual understanding. Dr. song Jian has reiterated the point that we should be open to the world and not conceal our shortcomings and problems. It is our belief that only when problems are exposed can Working Groups, international Members and Experts who used to know very little about China have acquired a deeper understanding of China. This forms the basis of our cooperation.

  In the second place, based on their knowledge about China and their research work, Council Members and Working Group experts have proposed many practical recommendations. In Chinese, there is an old saying:"the spectators see the chess game better than the players". Our foreign friends, who are spectators of China's problems, have brought us many valuable experiences that they have acquired in their own countries, which have helped us a lot.

  Through our joint efforts, the Council has been very effective. I hope that the Council will continue for the next five years. But I also think that the Council lacks publicity .l hope that the council will devote more efforts in that regard in the next phase so as to extend its influence.

  Last, I would like to express my thanks to the various governments and institutions in the world who have contributed so much to the Council.

  Thank you.

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