SUNCITY

Fiji Honours Chinese Envoy

The President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, yesterday conferred the award of Honourary Officer of the Order of Fiji medal to the outgoing Chinese Ambassador to Fiji, Huang Yong. The Officer of
13 Jan 2015 09:40
Fiji Honours Chinese Envoy
The President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau (right), with outgoing Chinese Ambassador to Fiji, Huang Yong after receiving the Honourary Officer of the Order of Fiji medal. Photo: DEPTFO News

The President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, yesterday conferred the award of Honourary Officer of the Order of Fiji medal to the outgoing Chinese Ambassador to Fiji, Huang Yong.

The Officer of the Order of Fiji is awarded for distinguished services of a high degree to Fiji or to humanity at large.

A Foreign Affairs’ press release stated that the award was recommended by the Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, through Fiji’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Ratu Inoke Kubuabola.

Ratu Inoke said the award recognises Ambassador Huang’s strong commitment to strengthening the relations between China and Fiji across many fronts, and especially over the recent years when Fiji was redefining the foundations of nationhood.

He said Ambassador Huang’s sincere and unwavering support for Fiji saw relations between Fiji and China lifted to the highest possible level.

“As a nation, China demonstrated that it was a true friend of Fiji when virtually the rest of the world shut its doors on us. China stood firm and supported us, demonstrating a deep understanding of our situation and further showing utmost respect for Fiji as a sovereign nation trying to rebuild itself,” Ratu Inoke said.

“It did not shut the door on us, nor did it just stand by and watched. China came to the fore and provided the much-needed support that any nation under the circumstances would strongly desire.”

He said the strengthening of relations culminated with the historic visit to Fiji of the Chinese President Xi Jinping last December.

The release stated that prior to the visit, President Xi hosted President Sir Ratu Epeli Nailatikau during the Youth Olympic Games in China last August.

Other visitations between high-level officials from the two countries have taken place, including several visits to China by Mr Bainimarama.

“China’s support towards Fiji was not purely restricted to the diplomatic arena, but it importantly came in tangible forms including technical assistance across many areas of development, through enhanced military ties, and also financially, among other forms of assistance,” Ratu Inoke said.

This also included support for the newly-established Pacific Islands Development Forum which saw China sponsoring the inaugural Leaders’ Summit in August 2013, and continuing to support it thereafter.

Ratu Inoke said the extent of relationship between any two sovereign nations are dependent to a great extent on the world-views of the respective envoys, and it was fortunate for Fiji that China had deployed a great envoy in the form of Ambassador Huang.

Prior to the investiture ceremony yesterday, Ambassador Huang had paid his farewell call on the President at the Presidential Office.

The Ambassador leaves Fiji on Thursday, January 15, 2015.

Feedback:  jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

 

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