Nushimen, Xianshengmen, wan shang hao. Thank you, Ambassador, for your kind introduction.
I am delighted to be with you here this evening to open the GREAT festival Shanghai.
This festival is a showcase and celebration of the creative strength of the British economy and the ingenuity of the British people.
It is a platform not only for our famed and still thriving creative sectors, such as film, art and media. But it is also a platform for the creativity and inventiveness that British firms apply in a wide variety of sectors, like healthcare and education.
The festival is a chance to show off the ability of British business to reinvent itself for new times and to rethink its relevance in new and changing markets.
I am sure it goes without saying that the businesses and entrepreneurs represented at this festival are a source of significant pride for the United Kingdom. Your work is responsible for millions of jobs and some of our biggest international success stories. But it is not just the creative strength on display here that makes this GREAT festival worthy of its name. It is also the openness and warmth of our Chinese hosts that we will be celebrating over the next few days.
This is my first time in China. But less than 24 hours into my first visit, I have a strong sense of the opportunity that exists for collaboration and partnership between our two countries.
This morning in Beijing as I was warmly welcomed by President Xi in the Great Hall of the People before visiting the Forbidden City I was given the chance to appreciate first-hand that China and Britain are united in our experience as countries with a proud and ancient history.
As I flew into Shanghai this evening, I could not help but be impressed by the famed skyline, and the bold and confident message that this city’s developments says about China’s future.
This GREAT Festival is a statement from the United Kingdom that we are excited about partnering with China in creativity and innovation. It is a message of partnership from the best of British business that we know the future successes of our economies will be shared successes.
I wish you all the best for a very successful GREAT Festival of Creativity. Thank you.