On 16 November, Ambassador ZHANG Jun attended the opening ceremony of the Chinese Festival of Lights in Emmen, Province of Drenthe and performed the ribbon-cutting ritual together with Minister Van der Hoeven of Economic Affairs for the official opening.
Mr. Zhang said in his remarks that cultural exchange brings closer the distance of different peoples and helps people to know each other better, to understand each other better and eventually to trust each other better. Lanterns stand for peace, happiness, good luck and prosperity in Chinese culture and we sincerely hope that this festival could bring prosperity to Dutch friends and enhance the friendship of two peoples.
Mr. Zhang pointed out that Chinese economy has shown more and more positive signs of recovery in the past months which creates opportunity for both sides to further broaden and deepen our cooperation and to tackle the global economic crisis together. The Chinese "Investment and Trade Promotion Delegation" composed of over 130 Chinese enterprises will visit the Netherlands at the end of November, which will further promote bilateral trade and economic cooperation. The Shanghai Expo, to be held in May next year, is a golden opportunity in promoting cross-culture dialogue, mutual understanding and international cooperation. We believe that the active participation of the Northern provinces of the Netherlands will further open the window of cooperation between China and the Netherlands.
This is the first time that such traditional Chinese lantern festival is organized in Europe. 32 gigantic lanterns and light sculptures artistically combine Chinese traditional culture and the element of animals. The light sculptures are made mostly from waste materials and lit with LED lamps which are very environment-friendly. Besides strolling in the park and enjoying the enchantment of Chinese culture, visitors can also try authentic Chinese cuisine, watch singing and dancing performances and participate in workshops and lectures. For more information, please visit: http://www.chinafestivaloflights.com/.