tv [untitled] May 15, 2012 5:00pm-5:30pm PDT
welcome to mayor ed kee;s -- lee's new year's celebration. my name is jason chan, and i am the master of ceremonies. people around the world celebrate the lunar new year. we celebrate the year of the water dragon. the dragon is the most powerful animal in the chinese zodiac. qualities include being magnanimous, stately, vigorous, strong, self assured, proud, noble, direct, dignified, intellectual, fiery, passionate, decisive, generous, and loyal. if there is any doubt this is the year of the dragon, just look at who has been inaugurated as the 43rd mayor of san francisco. [applause] the year of the dragon is a time for confronting vexing challenges, taking bold risks
and embracing innovation, and just getting it done. and that is what the mayor has been committed to -- getting things done. as the first asian mayor of san francisco, he has been a champion for diversity in our neighborhoods and city, promoting our rich culture and heritage, and strengthening our international ties with asia and beyond. i am proud to introduce the host of this evening celebration, our dragon mayor, mayor ed lee. [applause] mayor lee: happy lunar new year. welcome to city hall. i immediately want to thank all the people here that are sharing our stage, from commissioner ch ang to our guest from at&t, our tax collector assessor, phil king, counsel general gao, david chiu, carmen chu, eric mar, and
other board members who will join us. scott weiner, malia cohen who just came from china lot -- not long ago from a trip. thank you for being here. to our family associations, our department heads, our other commissioners and friends, happy new year, and welcome to our official celebration here at city hall of our wonderful chinese lunar new year. we just came from the official lighting of our new lantern. i hope you will stay tonight long enough to view all of its beauty and the lightness of it. there are a lead the lights on there. there are recycle cd's on the dragon boat.
it is 76 feet long. it is, of course, my entry into the america's cup. anyway, i want to thank everyone for being here, for helping us celebrate. as we have been saying, this is one of the most exciting, attractive holiday seasons for the whole of san francisco and all of our communities. we look forward, and i hope you join me, in not only the very big chinese new year's parade of will happen this saturday, but the whole weekend. there are community affairs. there is the coronation ball. we just finished the street for a couple of weeks ago. the pageant just happened this yesterday -- this weekend for miss chinatown usa. they have been a wonderful several weeks of celebration as we enter the year of the dragon. as i said many times, the year of the dragon is phenomenal, because it is a time where we
are confronting our challenges. we are taking on more risks. we are embracing innovation. and that is exactly what i want to do, in concert with our board of supervisors, to help lead the city and make sure we are boldly going forward in our recovery of our economic challenges, but also, most importantly, to provide opportunities for everyone in this city, regardless of your background, to fully participate in everything that is meaningful in the city, whether it is raising a family, joining in a business, or getting a job. there is such a wonderful opportunity for everyone to work together. this is meaningful for me. i personally am celebrating this with anita. we cleaned up the house a couple of weeks ago. we are still cleaning it out to get rid of stuff from old years. because of the opportunities i
see for this city, we are going to be receiving a lot of gifts in the wake of opportunities for the whole city, and we need to be prepared for that, to start celebrating the whole of these new years. i want to especially thank our counsel general for being such a great office in the city, for teaming with us in so many ways to not only celebrate these things, but a continual connection to so many of us in the bay area who want that connection, whether it is cultural, educational, or in business. there is so much we can celebrate and continue that connection. counsel general, it is my honor to signify this wonderful holiday by providing you the proclamation that signals not only our appreciation for these holidays, but deep appreciation for the ongoing work your office does to make sure that we keep up not only defers values, but
celebrate our heritage. on behalf of the city and county of san francisco, which officially declare this the year of the dragon. [applause] >> [speaking chinese] honorable mayor, thank you so much for your kind, warm words. i am so proud to hear, so happy to hear that today is the day of the year of the dragon.
i am the most delighted to join you tonight in this magnificent hall to celebrate the chinese lunar new year, the year of the dragon. today also happens to be the day of the chinese lantern festival. in china, the year of the dragon is the symbol of strength, of success. the lantern festival is a symbol of unity and harmony. i sincerely hope that the year of the dragon and the lantern festival will bring fortune for the great people of san francisco. these days are the best days of the chinese council general. we are busy attending all kinds of celebrations at the local
asian and chinese communities. in all these parties, the topic of china-u.s. relations is the most talked-about topic. everybody was happy to see that last year progress has been made in china-u.s. relationship. we saw a frequent exchange of high-level visits. the president of china, mr. hu jintao, visited america. the and the vice president of this country, mr. biden, visited china in august. this was a very important visit. there is another next week. we saw last year a record growth of our people to people exchange. according to that temporary
statistic, in the first nine months of last year, 1.0 7 million chinese tourists visited this country, the biggest increase of 27.7%. more than 2 million american people visited china, which means on average, every day, more than 9000 people are crossing the pacific. nowadays, about 160,000 chinese students are studying here. you have more than 20,000 american boys and girls studying in china. we saw a new record of our bilateral trade. last year, america experted $167.70 billion to china, up by 19%.
that makes china and america each other's second-largest trading partner. the state of california placed a large role in this relationship with china. the state of california experted $10.50 million to china, an increase of 19%, making california the largest exporter to china among all 50 states in this country. last year, california and kelly -- china and california established an official sister relationship. since then, the contacts and exchanges between the state of california and the province of xuangzhou has been intensified. in particular, i would like to
mention that san francisco made new contributions to the overall development of china-u.s. relations. last year, the state councilor and the chinese foreign minister, as well as dozens of chinese provincial players, visited this city. san francisco maintains frequent and many exchanges and full cooperation with your 30 year- old sister city, shanghai. and the newly established city. san francisco has also become a hot spot for chinese investment. according to our statistics, last year, more than 13 chinese enterprises had great success
with the chinese council general to erect in this area. that is double of the year before. last year, it was also a remarkable milestone for the local asian community in san francisco. mayor lee was elected as the first chinese american mayor of san francisco. [applause] a round of applause, again. san francisco is well known for its cultural diversity, which makes this city so dynamic. we are very glad to see the chinese communities in san francisco have gotten along with
other ethnic groups, taking part in the economic and social life of this city. they have made a great contribution. the have also made contributions to the friendship between china and the united states. on this occasion, i would like to extend my warm congratulations to the great people of san francisco. i appreciate what you have achieved in the past year. i believe that under the ministry of the dragon mayor, edwin lee, and the support of the first chinese american president of the board of supervisors, mr. david chiu, san francisco will maintain prosperity, and gain more
achievements in the year to come. and also, integration with china. a token of our congratulations. i would like to present a dragon to my elder brother, edwin lee, the mayor. i am a younger dragon. [applause] mayor lee: thank you very much. thank you. >> thank you, mayor. thank you, counsel general. the board of supervisors reflects the increasing dominance of asian americans in
government and politics. the sleeping dragon has awoken with four asian-american members of the board of supervisors, and the first asian american to serve as its president. please welcome president chiu, carmen chu, supervisor kim, and eric mar. president chiu: i wish you could see yourselves as we see you. we are chinese, japanese, and caribbean. we are south easton, southeast asian, and filipino. i want to thank the leaders in our community who are here with us tonight, leaders of our benevolent associations, our business associations, and our commissioners. we cannot do what we do in city hall without all of you. we know we have come a long way. it was not long ago that chinese
americans were excluded under our city laws. when japanese americans were interned. when filipino tenants were evicted from the international hotel. when the fbi investigated our community. for us to stand here now is amazing. i think finally we have enough asian americans to form our own dragon dance team. it would be a short dragon, but a dragon dance team nonetheless. we would not be here and be able to do that but for the support we have and the work we are all doing together. thank you all for being here, and a very happy lunar new year. [applause] supervisor chu: today, i want to welcome you to city hall and wish you a happy new year. [speaking chinese]
speaking to myself. i want to congratulate our new year, the year of the dragon, which is a special year. i did not know that our mayor was a dragon. as many of you know, the fifth dragon that comes back is a special dragon. on this special year, i think it is particularly important that merely will be serving his first year has our first elected asian-american mayor here in san francisco. as david chiu said, there have been decades of history and organizing that has gone to strengthening our community and bringing more political leadership to our community. i think it goes to show the immense amount of work that has gone into that. i want to congratulate our community in this new year. thank you. [applause] supervisor mar: happy year of
the dragon, everyone. i wish i were a dragon. it is so nice to have counsel general gao and mayor lee here. i am a tiger. my daughter is a dragon, though. she will be breathing fire this year. if i look forward to moving forward with courage and strength for all our neighborhoods. thank you, everyone. >> i also want to recognize in the audience we have a couple members of the board. supervisor scott weiner is here, and supervisor olague. thank you both for joining us. our next speaker is phil ting. since assuming office in july of
2005, he has worked to reform the assessor recorder's office and find new revenues in san francisco. please join me in welcoming assessor recorder phil ting. >> it is an honor to join our mayor and board of supervisors. i want to wish you all a happy new year and an incredible year of the dragon. hopefully, this suspicious time for us all -- we all are facing challenges with our local and national economy. so i hope it is a good year for us in terms of job creation, as well as economic growth. [speaking a foreign language]
thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you. our next speaker is the regional vice president of the external affairs for at&t, here in san francisco. at&t is proud to not only sponsor today's event, but to sponsor the chinese lunar new year parade this weekend. please welcome him. [applause] >> good evening, everyone. thank you jason, mayor lee, mrs. lee, general gao. at&t is all about connecting people across the world. while most people think of that with a phone or a mobile phone, which also connect people through events like this,
through the sponsorship of a beautiful dragon boat i can see lit up up there. that is gorgeous. we threw the switch on early tonight. thank you so much for letting us be part of your celebration. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, and think at&t for your continued commitment to our communities. finally, we have the chair of the asian american heritage month committee foundation. this is a dedicated leader in our asian american community. please welcome commissioner who claudine at chiang -- commissioner claudine chang. >> [speaking chinese]