Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday urged political parties worldwide to oppose any country that engages in “technology blockades”, an allusion to the US protecting IT developments which Beijing wants access to, reports Reuters.
In the same way as US President Joe Biden’s administration has sought support from like-minded democracies including the EU and Japan to coordinate a tougher stance against China, Beijing is seeking support from friendly nations such as North Korea and Serbia.
“Together, we must oppose all acts of unilateralism in the name of multilateralism, hegemony and power politics,” Xi told a virtual gathering of representatives of 500 parties from 160 countries including Russia, Zimbabwe, Cuba and Burkina Faso.
“Looking from the angle of ‘My Country First’, the world is narrow and crowded, and often full of fierce competition,” Xi said in apparent reference to former US president Donald Trump’s “America First” policy.
Chinese diplomats have often criticised the US for trying to hamper China’s development by cutting off its access to US technology.
Xi, who is also general secretary of the Communist Party of China, made the remarks at the CPC and World Political Parties Summit, one of many events held by Beijing to commemorate the centenary of the ruling party.
The virtual gathering was designed to help the world “adjust more quickly to the rise of China” and for Beijing to gain more “understanding, support and companionship”, said Guo Yezhou, vice-minister of the International Department, which organised the event.
China is increasingly nervous about its international image, which still suffers from worldwide anger against it for Beijing’s initial handling of the Covid-19 outbreak.
Other international PR problems include its maritime and territorial assertiveness towards neighbours in the South China Sea, its clampdown in Hong Kong and its treatment of ethnic minorities in Xinjiang, and its “wolf-warrior” diplomats who engage in a war of words with critics.
A survey of 17 advanced economies released last Wednesday by the US-based Pew Research Center showed that views about China have remained broadly negative and confidence in Xi near historic lows