BEIJING, March 2 (Xinhua) — China’s diplomacy is geared to serve its own development, but it will also support global governance.
China’s foreign policies are in the limelight as the country’s lawmakers will examine a national five-year development plan in the coming two weeks.
Explaining China’s diplomatic missions in a speech at an American think tank during his visit to the United States last week, Foreign Minister Wang Yi placed the Belt and Road Initiative as China’s strategic priority.
This infrastructure network, which is aimed at increasing trade and strengthening ties among Asian and European countries over land and by sea, is also a driving force for global economic recovery.
Niu Jun, professor of international relations with Peking University, said the speech showed China’s efforts to build mutual trust and avoid strategic miscalculation with the United States, a harder challenge in the year of a U.S. general election.
“The atmosphere might be tense this year as topics involving the South China Sea, Taiwan, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and trade will be thrown out to court voters,” said Niu. “But they can be managed since China and the United States are so closely linked, economically and socially.”
“It is precisely because of so many differences that the world has become such a diverse and colorful place,” President Xi Jinping said in Washington in September, “and that the need to broaden common ground and iron out differences has become so important.”
Xi stressed at the same time that the two countries should accommodate each other’s interests and concerns, including China’s expanding overseas interests.
The upcoming annual legislative session has attracted more than 1,000 foreign journalists as China is becoming an increasingly pivotal global stakeholder.
The reporters might be keen to understand how China is going to deal with the world, especially after February editions of China’s leading newspapers gave coverage to “Xi’s innovative diplomacy”: his agenda for global governance, supported by the ancient Confucian philosophy of building a “community of common destiny.”
China will host the G20 summit in September, a big occasion for Chinese leaders to explain this diplomatic plan.
The country has taken steps to participate more in global financial system. It launched the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) with 56 other founding members and joined the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in January.
Wang Yi assured his American audience that the AIIB is intended as a supplement to existing global financial institutions, rather than an attempt at subverting them.
Xi’s visit to Iran, Egypt and Saudi Arabia in January and China’s big role in resolving the Iranian nuclear issue showed that China is working to resolve international hot-spot issues.
Xi also explained China’s diplomatic policies with reference to the Confucian philosophy of justice and benefit, saying China is focusing more on justice as the world becomes a smaller place.
Contagious economic woes, intercontinental refugee crisis,the spread of terrorism and the Zika virus have affirmed the validity of the “common destiny” theory.
Many observers have noted that Xi’s notions are at odds with the “Clash of Civilizations” theory which advocates that cultural and religious identities will be the primary source of conflict in the modern world.
Xi championed the pursuit of common values based on peaceful competition. Those values are peace, development, fairness, justice, democracy and freedom, as he told the United Nations General Assembly in September.
China is likely to instill those values into a new five-year development plan featuring innovation, coordination, green development, opening up and shared prosperity.