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Chinese Foreign Minister: Sino-U.S. Relations Moving
in Positive Direction, Beyond ‘Zero-Sum Mentality’

March 2017

Xinhua/Bao Dandan
Wang Yi
By Office of the President-elect [CC BY 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Rex Tillerson

March 8, 2017 (EIRNS)—In a broad-ranging press conference on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the National People’s Congress, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi reported that the Sino-U.S. relationship "is transitioning ... in a positive direction through intense cooperation and joint efforts on both sides."

Wang pointed out that last month’s phone conversation between Xi Jingping and Donald Trump "had set the direction and paved the way for bilateral relations," adding that

"as long as we act on the consensus reached between our Presidents, follow the principle of no conflicts and no confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, there is no reason why China and the United States cannot become excellent partners."

Both nations have many shared interests, Wang underscored,

"so we should pool our efforts to enlarge out shared interests, rather than building one’s success at the expense of the other, because it is just not possible."

The Chinese Foreign Minister praised his U.S. counterpart, Rex Tillerson, who will be visiting China soon, as a "good listener and a good communicator."

In the same press conference, Wang Yi also emphasized the importance of China, the United States and Russia working together. Relations among the three should not be a "seesaw game," he asserted, but rather the three should work with each other to pursue

"win-win, rather than zero-sum outcomes...we believe the three countries can develop healthy and positive relations so that jointly we can fulfill our responsibilities for world peace and development."

He stressed that Russia-China relations are as strong "as they have ever been," and that the two will improve strategic coordination on both international and regional issues, and together "act as a stabilizer in an otherwise turbulent world." "[The relationship] has stood the test of international vicissitudes," he said, and it won’t be weakened by any external factors."

Looking toward May’s One Belt, One Road summit, Wang Yi described this initiative as "the most popular public good and the platform for international cooperation with the brightest prospects in the world." The idea of the Belt and Road Initiative came from China, he said, "but it belongs to the world with its benefits flowing to all countries." In this context, he also mentioned the BRICS grouping, which, despite the ups and downs of its individual members, hasn’t lost its "luster, but will shine more brightly if its members stay united." Wang also indicated that they would also explore the “modalities of BRICS Plus”, indicating the possibility of expanding the BRICS to other countries.

As the rotating chair of the BRICS this year, he said that China intends to work with member nations to review its own experience, "plan the future," and usher in the "second golden decade of BRICS cooperation."