Dear Dr. Fraser:
My responsibilities demand that at the time of your conference I should be in one of the distant regions of our land. Therefore, much as I regret it, I will be unable to attend your meeting in Castello di Gargonza. I have asked my colleagues, however, to convey to you my very best wishes.
The selection by your Society of the theme "Time, Science, and Society in China and the West" demonstrates a sense of history. For historical developments have advanced modern China into a prominent position in the contemporary world.
To the small number of Western scholars who have been traditionally interested in China, a rapidly growing number of others are being added, especially from the scientific disciplines. There is an increasing awareness among them of the privileged position that scientific work holds in the People's Republic. The expanding exchange between China and the West in matters of common interest will surely lead to an increasingly enlightened understanding of our achievements by the world community.
Once again, my very best wishes to you and your colleagues for an excellent meeting.
Vice Chairman of the State Scientific and Technological Commission of the People's Republic of China and Vice President of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences