Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Beijing hopes Biden will end Trump’s Cold War, restore ties

Beijing seems to be hoping Biden will pursue former US president Barack Obama's policy of identifying Moscow rather than Beijing as the prime enemy of Washington.

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As Joe Biden prepares to take the reins of US power this month, China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Saturday he hoped that the US president-elect would end the incumbent Donald Trump’s “Cold War” policy towards Beijing and return to a “sensible approach” by restoring normal ties.

The Trump administration has been keeping up a broadside against China on trade, Tibet, Taiwan and the South China Sea, as well as criticism of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC) under President Xi Jinping.

The Chinese authorities hope the Biden administration will resume dialogue with China, restore normalcy to the bilateral relations and restart cooperation, Wang told the state-run Xinhua news agency.

He said that in recent years, US-China relations have run into unprecedented difficulties which all boiled down to the “serious misconceptions” of US policymakers about China.

“We are ready to develop with the US a relationship based on coordination, cooperation and stability. We know that some in the US are uneasy about China’s rapid development. However, the best way to keep one’s lead is through constant self-improvement, not by blocking others’ development,” he said.

He also struck a positive note on China’s ties with the European Union (EU).

Last week, Xi along with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron announced that they have completed investment agreement negotiations as scheduled.

“The agreement will provide greater market access, stronger institutional guarantees and brighter cooperation prospects for mutual investment,” Xi said in a statement.

US Deputy National Security Adviser Matthew Pottinger blasted the EU for reaching the deal with China despite Beijing’s “human rights record”.

China’s state-run Global Times reported that White House Trade Adviser Peter Navarro also called it “a bad deal” which will pose a geopolitical challenge to the US.

Wang, in his interview, said that “China and the EU are comprehensive strategic partners, not rivals.”

Wang also hailed China’s strengthening ties with Russia, which Chinese experts say could get stronger if Biden pursues former US president Barack Obama’s policy of identifying Moscow as the prime enemy of Washington rather than Beijing.

China and Russia will continue to be examples of good-neighbourly relations between major countries, which would underpin global strategic stability, Wang said.

“The year 2021 is a year of special importance for China-Russia relations, as both countries will enter a new development stage. In developing China-Russia strategic cooperation, we see no limit, no forbidden zone and no ceiling to how far this cooperation can go.”

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