Yang Jiechi, Chinese Foreign Minister
Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi recently addressed China's diplomatic achievements over the 60 years since the founding of the People's Republic in 1949. He also made projections on the future of Chinese diplomacy. Yang's main points follow:
Over the past 60 years, China's diplomacy has played an important part in upholding the country's sovereignty, security and development interests and in promoting world peace, development and cooperation. China has worked closely with other countries to address various international disputes in a responsible manner. It has vigorously conducted economic, cultural and public diplomacy and achieved fruitful results. The number of countries having diplomatic relations with China has increased from 18 in the early days of the People's Republic to 171 today.
China has entered into new types of cooperative relations or constructive partnerships with the world's major countries. China and Russia have established a strategic partnership of coordination and relations between the two countries have enjoyed sustained, sound and steady progress at a very high level. It is the common aspiration of both the Chinese and Russian people to build stronger relations between their countries.
China-U.S. relations have reached an unprecedented level in terms of both depth and breadth over the past 30 years since the establishment of diplomatic ties. The two countries have agreed to build a positive, cooperative and comprehensive relationship for the 21st century, and have put in place the China-U.S. Strategic and Economic Dialogue mechanism. The growth of China-U.S. relations serves the fundamental interests of the two peoples, and is conducive to peace, stability and development in the Asia Pacific region and beyond.
It has established a comprehensive strategic partnership with the European Union and a strategic relationship of mutual benefit with Japan. It has been actively engaged in the "BRIC" (Brazil, Russia, India and China) dialogue and the dialogue among the "five developing countries" (China, India, Brazil, South Africa and Mexico) and enjoyed ever stronger cooperation with the major emerging economies.
CHINA'S VOICE: Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai speaks at the Asian-African Conference on April 19, 1955, in Bandung, Indonesia (XINHUA)
Since the founding of the People's Republic, China has given top priority to fostering good relations with neighboring countries in its overall diplomacy. Though its specific policies toward these countries may have featured differently at different times, the fundamental policy of building good-neighborly relations has never wavered. Moreover, the country has been committed to building a harmonious surrounding environment featuring durable peace and common prosperity.
Since the beginning of the new century, China has been pursuing a policy of building amicable relations and partnerships with its neighbors. It has jointly established the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) with Russia and Central Asian countries, carried out dialogue with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and participated in the dialogue between ASEAN and China, Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK). Its trade and economic links with neighboring countries are growing closer. China is now the largest trading partner of Japan, the ROK, India, Viet Nam and Mongolia.
China has been enhancing solidarity and cooperation with other developing countries. After the founding of the People's Republic, the Chinese Government provided firm support to the people of Asia, Africa and Latin America in their just cause to gain and safeguard independence and develop their national economies. Since the launch of the reform and opening-up program in the late 1970s, China's relations with developing countries in various parts of the world have made important progress.
The Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, which China hosted in 2006, was a great success, and eight measures were announced at the summit to assist Africa's development. China's exchanges and cooperation with African countries in the political, economic and cultural fields have now entered a new stage.
China has also set up the China-Arab Cooperation Forum. Its practical cooperation with Latin America and the Caribbean region has been moving ahead. Strengthening solidarity and creating mutually beneficial cooperation with the developing world is the foundation of China's diplomacy.