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Remarks by H.E. Song Yumin at "Happy Spring Festival" Performance

Dr. the honorable Nyan- Gadsby-Dolly, Minister of Community Development, Culture and Arts,

Ambassadors and High Commissioners and other members of the diplomatic corps,

Special invited guests,

Ladies and gentlemen,

Good evening.

     It gives me a great honor and pleasure to welcome one and all of you to tonight's Chinese cultural performance presented by the visiting China Inner Mongolia Art Group. The Embassy of People's Republic of China in the Republic of T&T is proud to introduce the art group to T&T and to be in collaboration with the Ministry of Community Development, Culture and Arts of T&T to present this gala performance which will boost our bilateral cultural exchanges and showcase the cultural diversity in China.

     Among the 56 ethnicities are there in China, the Mongols boast the 6th largest group in population mainly living in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. Heavily influenced by traditional nomadic way of life, they have carried forth and developed a unique grassland culture which feature distinctive sports and music. Tonight, on this stage, the Inner Mongolia Art Group will present to us with an experience of that fascinating culture.

     In recent years, the Art Group has produced many works with distinguishing features of the pastoral culture by means of music and dance drama, Mongolian traditional drama, symphony and opera and so on. They have also been engaged in cultural exchange events and toured many countries in the world.

     Recent years saw more and more active cultural exchanges between China and Trinidad and Tobago. The Anhui and Jiangsu Art Group, Shanghai Chinese Orchestra were well received by Trinbagonians. Steel pan music, Carnival and other form of music and Art of TT are becoming increasingly known to people in China. Such cultural exchanges contributed to the mutual understanding between our two peoples and appreciations of each other's culture.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

     The celebration of Chinese Lunar New Year over past weeks is now closing curtains. The essence of the celebration and the core value of the festival culture come at family reunion and happiness in harmony. From the year 2009 onward, the Ministry of culture of China has been sending Art groups worldwide under the program entitled Happy Spring Festival aims at sharing the happiness of Chinese New Year and Chinese culture with peoples in other countries and promoting the harmonious world. The Inner Mongolia Art Group bears such mission to bring the happiness and auspiciousness the year of Rooster generates to the people of Trinidad and Tobago to share with. With the curtains drawing open for the oncoming Carnival, I hope that the show of the Art group tonight will serve as another warming up event for the Carnival revel.

     To conclude, I wish to thank all the members of the Art Group for your coming to Trinidad and Tobago after a journey of great distance punctuated with stopover performances at Houston, Dallas and Oklahoma of the United States.

     My sincere thanks also go to Hon. Minister Dr. Nyan Gadsby-Dolly and other officials of the Ministry of Community Development, Culture and Arts, for your generous support. This wouldn't be possible without your collaboration and unremitting efforts.

     I wish every success of the performance and wish each and all of you present enjoy the show.

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