The mayor's video message in a mix of Spanish and Mandarin. / SUR

Watch as Malaga mayor switches to Mandarin to wish city's Chinese community a happy new year

Francisco de la Torre released a video message to mark the occasion, as 2023 also marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Spain and China

MATÍAS STUBER MALAGA.

Millions of people around the world have welcomed in the Chinese New Year, which is governed, as is tradition, by the lunar calendar. The year of the tiger is now followed by the year of the rabbit - the fourth of the twelve animals that make up the circle of Chinese mythology that represents harmony and longevity. The change of the year was celebrated in China at dawn from Sunday to Monday.

The mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, has taken advantage of the occasion to send a video message to the Chinese community of Malaga. And he didn’t hesitate to do it in Mandarin, as can be seen in the video that accompanies this story.

For China, this New Year puts it under special scrutiny. It is the first to be celebrated since the Beijing government lifted its strict anti-coronavirus policy, allowing millions of family members to meet in person for the first time in three years. Tradition dictates a massive family dinner, while public television broadcasts a special gala that attracts a massive audience.

1,500 Chinese residents in city

This year also marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Spain and China.

"The Chinese community is increasingly important in Malaga. That is why I encourage young people not only to continue learning about Chinese culture, but also to actively participate in Malaga events to promote cultural exchange and social integration. I wish you a happy New Year so that together we can build a better city," said De la Torre.

Various performances have been held at the College of Chinese Culture to commemorate the New Year. A meeting attended by the Councilor for Migration and Foreign Affairs, María del Mar Torres, and the director of the College of Chinese Culture, Hong Chuan Li, among others. It was organised by Leticia Chen, the president of the Chamber for Hispanic-China Cooperation.

The Chinese community in Malaga city numbers about 1,500 people.