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UK Prime Minister Theresa May wishes all a very happy and healthy Lunar New Year, 2017 Year of Rooster


By WcP.Observer - Posted on 27 January 2017

(quote)

27 January, 2017
"As the lanterns are lit and the dumplings are served, let me wish you and your family, wherever you are, a very happy and healthy New Year,” she said, before concluding her message in Chinese: "Xin Nian Kuai Le (Happy New Year)"
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Thursday sent her wishes through the government’s website and her own Weibo account to those who celebrate Chinese Lunar New Year worldwide, pledging to further strengthen China-UK relations.

May said the Year of the Rooster is set to be particularly important for the relationship between Britain and China, because the starting point for bilateral relations is stronger than ever before.

Recalling the historic state visit of President Xi Jinping in October 2015, she said the two countries are seeing an increasing development of their relations. "We receive more Chinese investment than any other major European country. We’ve got around 150,000 Chinese students studying here and the number of Chinese tourists visiting has doubled in five years," May said.

In her message, May indicated that she hopes to make another visit to China, following her trip to the G20 Summit in Hangzhou last year, which was her first visit outside Europe as prime minister and her first meeting with President Xi Jinping. Because this year marks the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to China and the 45th anniversary of ambassadorial relations between the two countries, she hopes both Britain and China will further develop ties in all fields.

"I want us to take this chance to build on all the ties we share – in business, diplomacy, education, tourism and culture – as we forge a new role for Britain, as the most outward-looking, free-trading nation in the world," May said.

Because both the UK and China are permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, she said the two countries are working together on the most pressing global issues.

The prime minister also acclaimed the British Chinese community for its enormous contribution to British society.
“The Rooster - the Fire Rooster - represents so many of the characteristics we need to employ in that endeavor: openness, confidence, hard work and leadership," May said, adding “indeed, they are characteristics demonstrated day in, day out by the British Chinese community”.

"As the lanterns are lit and the dumplings are served, let me wish you and your family, wherever you are, a very happy and healthy New Year,” she said, before concluding her message in Chinese: "Xin Nian Kuai Le (Happy New Year)"

A centuries old tradition, the Lunar New Year is celebrated in many countries across Asia and around the world
Lunar New Year - Year of the Rooster
A centuries old tradition, the Lunar New Year is celebrated in many countries across Asia and around the world. In celebration of the Lunar New Year, please join Professor Santa J. Ono, President and Vice-Chancellor, The University of British Columbia, for a special dinner at the Robert H. Lee Alumni Centre.

8 Chinese New Year Traditions We Can All Celebrate Chinese culture is filled with holidays and celebrations, and among them, the Lunar New Year is the very biggest. In China and Taiwan, offices and schools close for a week, and more than 3.5 billion people—in the world’s largest human migration!—are expected to travel so they can ring in the occasion with their loved ones. February 8, 2016, marks the first day of the Year of the Monkey, but before you throw yourself into celebrating, observe these rituals to usher in a successful year.

1. Clean up
Scrub every nook and crevice of your home to rid yourself of the detritus and bad mojo of the previous year—think of it as a very early spring cleaning. You must complete your work by New Year’s Day, and then stow away your broom, mop, vacuum, and Swiffer. Because if you wield these tools on the first few days of the New Year, you’ll sweep or suck away your good fortune.

2. Put your financial house in order, too
If you borrowed money from family or friends last year, pay them back before the start of the New Year; any outstanding loans will bring you misfortune. The same goes for unresolved arguments or grudges, so make nice.

3. Beautify yourself …
A haircut and a new outfit—red is the most auspicious hue, but if it isn’t your color, just be sure to stay away from the unlucky shades of black and white—are must-haves for New Year’s Day. As with cleaning, trimming your hair in the first days of the New Year will result in snipping away good fortune so groom accordingly.

4. … And your home
Decorate your clean, sparkling house with a bowl of oranges or apples, or with live plants (avoid white flowers; they’re associated with funerals). It’s also customary to hang up signs with Chinese sayings and the character fu, which means good luck. But if you choose the latter, display them upside down; this signifies that success is coming.

5. Feast with your family
The most important night for getting together is New Year’s Eve. That’s when you gather with your nearest and dearest for dinner, eating prosperity-begetting dishes like fish (always served whole), dumplings (prized because they’re shaped like gold or silver ingots), and sticky rice cakes. Because New Year’s is a time when young adults are expected to bring home their significant others for inspection, in the past few years a burgeoning industry of boyfriends and girlfriends that you can rent for the holiday has sprung up in China.

6. Be a giver
According to tradition, hong bao—or red envelopes—containing a significant amount of money are presented to children, unmarried adults, and seniors on New Year’s Eve. But technology has blown the custom wide open, and now people of all ages and relationships both send and receive their hong bao via text message. The funds, often as little as US $2, can be deposited into mobile payment accounts.

7. Get out there
While New Year’s Eve is reserved for those you’re closest to, the rest of the holiday is devoted to connecting with your next-level loved ones. Always bring a gift—tea, fruit, pastries, or candy are good choices—on your social calls, but under no circumstances should you give four of anything (for example, four canisters of lapsang souchong). In Mandarin Chinese, “four” is a homonym for death.

8. Set a positive tone for the year
According to Chinese superstition, whatever you do during the New Year’s period will characterize the 12 months to follow. So no crying, no arguing, and no borrowing money for the first two weeks, unless that’s how you were hoping to spend your days.

Update - February 01, 2017

First daughter Ivanka Trump is celebrating Chinese New Year at the Chinese Embassy in Washington President Donald Trump's daughter walked into a reception for the holiday holding hands with her daughter. She was accompanied by Chinese Ambassador to the U.S. Cui Tiankai. They were instantly surrounded by a swarm of other guests who pulled out phones to take their photo.

Ivanka Trump stopped to watch a performance of traditional music by an all-female cast of Chinese musicians in green, blue and yellow gowns. She then watched a troupe of male dancers who juggled hats while standing on each other in pyramid formation. Ivanka Trump traveled to Delaware with her father earlier Wednesday to honor the returning remains of a U.S. Navy SEAL killed in a weekend raid in Yemen.

First Granddaughter Arabella has been studying the language since she was 18 months old Ivanka Trump's four-year-old daughter Arabella serenades her family in Mandarin to ring in the Chinese New Year.
Family tradition: Last year, Arabella rang in the Chinese New Year by dressing up as Little Red Riding Hood
Star of the show: The little girl, who has been studying Mandarin since she was 18 months old, wore a red dress featuring Chinese embroidery as she performed for her parents and her two-year-old brother Joseph.

(unquote)

Photo courtesy China Daily, Alumni UBC, Xinhua / Liu Yang, Ivanka Trump

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