The United States and China must find a way to get along for the benefit of all, Chinese Ambassador to the United States Xie Feng said here on Tuesday.
“Going forward, we need to find a right way for China and the United States to get along in the new era,” said Xie at the Gala Dinner 2023 of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations. “We will be celebrating the 45th anniversary of the establishment of China-U.S. diplomatic ties next year. The China-U.S. relationship will continue to be the most important bilateral relationship in the world.”
“It is China’s consistent belief that our two countries should be partners, not rivals; that we should pursue win-win outcomes, not zero-sum game; and that we should together stabilize and improve this relationship, not allow it to slide into conflict or confrontation,” he said.
The three principles outlined by President Xi Jinping, namely, mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation, “represent our long-term and fundamental approach to China-U.S. relations and provide a guideline for exploring the path forward,” said Xie.
The ambassador noted that while a lot has changed, the historical logic underlying the growth of the China-U.S. relationship has not: “The importance of the relationship for our respective development and world prosperity is not to be underestimated, the aspiration of our peoples for peace and friendship is not to be dismissed, and the efforts of generations of peoples and our extensive common interests are not to be denied.”
“At present, stabilizing China-U.S. relations is a common expectation,” he said, adding that positive signs of a more stable China-U.S. relationship have been welcomed by various communities in both countries and the international community.
Recently, the two countries have had a series of high-level interactions. China has resumed group tours to the United States; direct flights will increase to 48 every week; and dialogue and exchanges between think tanks, provinces and states, and the legislature are on the rise, Xie noted.
“More high-level interactions are on the way. In two days, Foreign Minister Wang Yi will visit the United States. We hope the U.S. side will work with China in the same direction, shorten the negative list, expand the positive agenda, and bring China-U.S. relations back to the right track of sound and stable growth,” he said.
“If we can learn anything from the ups and downs in China-U.S. relations over the past few years, it is that conflict between China and the United States should never be allowed, decoupling will never work, Cold-War confrontation will lead nowhere, reversing the downward spiral is a shared wish, and messing up this relationship serves no one’s interest,” said Xie.
Meanwhile, difficulties and challenges remain, said the ambassador. “But to our encouragement, supporters of exchanges and cooperation between China and the United States are never absent. Friends from the U.S. business and strategic communities have been visiting China, calling for seizing China’s opportunities and further tapping its market.”
“I am more convinced that the hope and foundation of the China-U.S. relationship lie in the people, and its future lies in the youths. It is the warmhearted, hardworking and open-minded American people, just like those of Iowa, who define what America truly is,” said Xie, citing his recent trip to Muscatine, the city President Xi visited in 1985.
“The growth of China-U.S. relations could not be achieved without the strategic guidance of our leaders. Nor will it be achieved without the participation and support by people from various communities in both countries,” he said.
“I count on the National Committee (on U.S.-China Relations) and all our friends here to continue playing a leading role in restoring China-U.S. relations back to the right track,” Xie said. “Together, let us explore a path of win-win cooperation between China and the United States for the benefits of both peoples and the world.”