Audiences in New Zealand were treated to a dazzling display of the best of China's culture on Sunday.
The "Experience China in New Zealand" program, organized by China's State Council Information Office, opened with a display of paintings, calligraphy, seal carving and other crafts and a New Zealand launch of book "Xi Jinping: The Governance of China."
China's Consul-General to Auckland, Niu Qingbao, welcomed a large crowd to Auckland's main arts and entertainment venue, the Aotea Centre, for the launch.
The highlight of the evening for many in the crowd was the performance by the China National Acrobatic Troupe.
Former New Zealand Trade Minister Phil Goff, who signed the free trade agreement with China in 2008, told Xinhua at the event that he had not read the book on Xi Jinping, but "if they've got an English language version, that would be very very good."
"It's great to have 'Experience China' here in New Zealand because it opens up the eyes of New Zealanders to the rich and diverse culture of China, both its classical culture and its modern culture," he said in an interview with Xinhua.
George Andrews, national vice-president of the New Zealand China Friendship Society, said cultural events such as "Experience China" had a distinguished role in building the society and the first links between New Zealand and the People's Republic of China.
Auckland Mayor Len Brown, who is currently in China visiting Auckland's sister cities of Guangzhou and Ningbo as well as Shanghai, fully supported the growing people-to-people relationship with China, said Auckland City Council representative and global partnership advisor Koro Dickinson.
"We talk a lot about our trade and economic relationship with China, but the glue that holds that together is the people-to- people links so we, Auckland, continue to celebrate that," Dickinson said in an interview with Xinhua.
"We're very very proud of our diversity and the Chinese community here. I think it's fantastic and I hope we'll have something like this on an annual basis."