5. Neither China nor the US can mold the other in one’s own image, and China-US relations should not be driven by ideologies.
The CPC is China’s governing party. This is the choice of history and the people, a choice firmly supported by the 1.4 billion Chinese people. No attempt to sever the close ties between the CPC and the Chinese people will ever succeed. During the past several decades, it is under CPC’s leadership that China has achieved rapid economic growth and enduring social stability, something often referred to as the “twin miracles”. It is the foreign policy and US policy pursued by the CPC that have led to the tremendous and incredible success in China-US cooperation. What, if I may ask, has the CPC done wrong in all this? Why are some senior US officials so hostile toward the CPC and so vicious in their verbal attacks?
I also find it hard to understand: why does the US always seek to change the other country in state-to-state relations? Why does it try to impose its own ideology on others? What is the point of stopping a country from pursuing its development path that has proved successful? “There are essential differences between China and the United States in their social systems.” Those are the exact words in the Shanghai Joint Communiqué. These differences did not prevent the two countries from establishing and growing bilateral ties 48 years ago. Today, they certainly should not be an obstacle to China-US cooperation and a future-oriented relationship.
China has all along followed the principle of non-interference in others’ internal affairs. We have no intention to meddle with US elections. Yet some in the US are resorting to all possible means to drag China into US election politics. They play the “China card”. They use China as a handy scapegoat for every problem they have. And then they accuse China of meddling with US internal affairs and swaying its elections. That is so unfair for China.
6. Forming an anti-China bloc is to divide the global village. It runs completely counter to the trend of the times. We live in a globalized world, which calls for multilateralism and global cooperation. In a world where national interests are interconnected, any attempt to exclude China, create “parallel systems”, or break the world into two markets and industrial chains is to turn back the wheel of history. To build a bloc against China and force other countries to take sides will not win hearts and minds. Many countries resent being put in such a position.
China pursues friendship with all countries around the world. We hope to boost connectivity through the Belt and Road Initiative. We put ourselves on an equal footing with all countries, and we are committed to developing friendship and cooperation. China will not be isolated. It is impossible to exclude a market of 1.4 billion people. The attempt to form blocs and split the world in this increasingly networked and digital age is just preposterous. It is doomed to fail.
7. It is important to have correct perceptions of the international role of China. Anyone without bias can see that China is a force for stability in a volatile world. It brings certainty to a rapidly-changing world and positive energy to global governance.
In the wake of COVID-19, China has launched the largest global emergency humanitarian operation in history. It has provided assistance to 150 countries and four international organizations, and shared containment experience with the world through video conferencing and sending medical expert teams. China has pledged to provide US$2 billion over two years to help with global COVID-19 response, and make its COVID-19 vaccine research and development a global public good. China will work with other G20 members to implement the Debt Service Suspension Initiative and give Africa greater support in containing the virus. China has provided over 70 billion masks to the world, including more than 60 masks on average for every American.
China’s assistance and support to other countries serves no selfish interests, and has no strings attached. China is by no means seeking geopolitical influence or predominance. What we hope to do, given our success in containing the virus inside China, is to provide more public goods to the international community in a time of crisis and step up to our responsibility as a major country.
8. China and the US must manage differences through dialogue and cooperation, and seek to accommodate each other’s core interests and concerns. I noticed that the recent China-US high-level internal dialogue in Hawaii has received a lot of attention in our respective countries and the world. This means that between China and the US, two major countries with special global responsibilities, the more difficulties and tensions there are, the more imperative it is to talk to each other and build trust. Megaphone diplomacy does not solve problems, and may even turn a small issue into a crisis. The existing communication and dialogue mechanisms should not be abandoned. New ways and channels of dialogue are also needed. We should cooperate wherever and whenever possible, and manage, to the best of our ability, differences that persist. There also need to be mechanisms in place for early warning, emergency response and consultations if problems occur to ensure that the relationship does not derail or spin out of control.
Issues related to Taiwan, Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Tibet touch on China’s sovereignty and security. There is no room for foreign interference on those issues. We firmly oppose the groundless US accusations and so-called sanctions against China for our legislation safeguarding national security in Hong Kong.
Clearly, national security legislation is a way of exercising sovereignty. It is a common international practice. The US has as many as 20 national security laws. Its legal system on national security is being constantly strengthened. Why can’t China do the same?
The legislation is designed to hold accountable a very small number of criminals who put national security in serious jeopardy. It does not affect Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy, the rights and freedoms of Hong Kong residents, or the legitimate rights and interests of foreign investors in Hong Kong. I am fully confident that the national security law will only bring about a more stable, prosperous and attractive Hong Kong. Hong Kong is poised to embrace a better future.
I am optimistic about the future of China-US relations. Although the relationship is overcast by dark clouds, the sky will not fall, and the sun will eventually shine again. Likewise, nothing can stop the general trend of China-US cooperation forever.
China remains committed to the principle of no-conflict and no-confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation. China stands ready to work with the US to advance China-US relations based on coordination, cooperation and stability. I believe that the two peoples have the will and wisdom to find the way for the two major countries with different social systems and cultural backgrounds to live together on this planet in peace and to cooperate with each other for win-win results.