News & Events

17 Aug 2021

Fudan Character

Empowering and inspiring: Fudan scholar Karin Vazquez on Xi's reply


Chinese President Xi Jinping has hailed representatives of young foreign participants at the Global Young Leaders Dialogue (GYLD) for their active efforts to visit various parts of China and deepen their understanding of the country.


Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, encouraged them to further exchanges and mutual learning, and contribute to the building of a community with a shared future for humanity.


Xi made the remarks Tuesday in his reply letter to 36 representatives of young foreign participants at the GYLD. These representatives are from 28 countries.


Initiated by Chinese think tanks, GYLD offers a platform for the sharing of ideas and mutual learning among young people from different countries and fields.


Happiness must be achieved through hard work, Xi wrote in the letter, noting that to achieve national development and revitalization, the most important thing for China, a country with a vast territory and large population, is to follow a development path suiting its local conditions.


Practice has shown that as the new and uniquely Chinese path to modernization grows even wider, it will bring better development prospects to China and more benefits to the world, read the letter.


Even after completing a 100-year course of struggles, the CPC has remained true to its original aspiration and founding mission, Xi said, vowing that the CPC will work tirelessly to realize the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation and promote the development and advancement of humankind.


More overseas youths are welcome to China for exchanges, Xi said in the letter, expressing his hope that young people at home and abroad will enhance mutual understanding, develop friendship and achieve mutual success, thus contributing to the building of a community with a shared future for humanity.


In their letter to Xi, the representatives of young foreign participants at the GYLD extended congratulations to the CPC on its centenary. They talked about their trips across China and expressed their hopes of serving as a bridge to promote exchanges and dialogues between China and the rest of the world.

“From a young leader’s perspective, it is very empowering and inspiring,” said Karin Vazquez, one of the GYLD representatives who wrote the letter to President Xi, when talking about Xi’s reply.

Vazquez is now a Brazilian PhD candidate in International Politics at Fudan University and senior advisor to the United Nations, where she leads the development of the 2022-2025 strategy for the UN Office for South-South Cooperation.

“One of the main lessons that I have had after living in China for the past 3 years is the level of the vision that the Chinese people have and their capacity to realize their dreams. People are not intimidated by high-level ambitions. It is exactly the opposite. They are motivations. That is a big lesson for me and is very much reflected in President Xi’s words in the letter, calling us to aim high and to take positive leadership not only in our own countries but also in the world,” said Vazquez.

Vazquez took part in the GYLD tour to urban and rural destinations in Sichuan province last June. “The tour helped me reflect upon issues I normally deal with in my work through new and, sometimes, very practical lenses. For example, how harmony and growth coexist in national development strategies, as seen in our visit to Mount Qingcheng; how governments can play responsible leadership across time, as in our visit to the Dujiangyan irrigation system built 2,000 years ago; and how technology can be deployed to preserve our past and memory, as seen in our visit to the archaeological excavations in Guanghan.”

During the 2021 annual forum of GYLD on July 29, around 140 young representatives from various walks of life gathered in Beijing, exchanging views on topics like sustainable development, public health, joint fight against the pandemic, scientific innovation and open world economy.


As a speaker at the forum, Vazquez said, as global citizens, we are faced with challenges that are increasingly complex and cross-border in nature and can only be addressed with strong international cooperation. This requires collaborative frameworks, institutions and finance that facilitate the transfer and appropriation of technology by all countries and provide solutions that are consistent with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The COVID-19 pandemic has led to many economic setbacks, exacerbated poverty and disrupted the implementation of the SDGs in many parts of the world. Investment in vaccine production and equal distribution is urgent. We also need to maintain a flexible attitude towards cooperation to rebuild this world.