Cui Tiankai: Cooperation is the only right choice



On December 15th, Ambassador Cui Tiankai attended a gala dinner of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relationscelebrating its 50th Anniversary and delivered remarks.

Ambassador Cui extended congratulations to the National Committee for its 50th anniversary. He quoted Confucius "At the age of fifty, one knows the will of heaven "and pointed out that in the transition period, lessons and experiences learned from the past should continue to guide the steady and healthy growth of the China-U.S. relationship.

Ambassador Cui highlighted four key takeaways. First, cooperation is the only correct choice for China and the U.S. The two countries should be partners in cooperation instead of adversaries in competition. Both stand to win in cooperation, and lose in conflicts. The two sides should make joint efforts to build a strong and stable partnership in the years to come.

Second, mutual trust is of crucial importance. Without trust, there is no cooperation to speak of. Trust comes from mutual understanding. China and the U.S. must make genuine efforts to get better understanding of each other's past and present, culture and society, economy and politics, defense and diplomacy, and intention and capability. This will help to avoid miscalculation and mis-perception, so that people do not need to worry about the imagined worst-case scenario, and can work together for the best-case scenario in the real world.

Third, mutual respect is the foundation of China-U.S. relationship. Friendship starts with respect. This is true for relations between individuals as well as relations among nations. It is natural to have differences in international relations. But differences should be managed constructively with full respect to the core interest and major concerns of others. Any attempt to maximize one's own gain at the expense of the core interest of the other will never succeed. Principles and norms that govern international relations are the very foundation of relationships. They should be preserved and protected. Without principles and norms, there are no relations to speak of.

Fourth, the interest of the two peoples should always be the ultimate goal. Support from people gives the best guarantee for the long-term prospect of China-U.S. relationship. As president Xi Jinping said, "people's pursuit of happiness should be what we strive for". Peoples of China and the U.S. want stable and healthy relationship between the two countries. The two sides should work to ensure that the bilateral relationship serves the long-terms interest of both peoples. Support and commitment of the two peoples is the best guarantee of long-term relations between China and the U.S.

Ambassador Cui hoped that the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations and guests from both China and the U.S. will continue to bridge the two countries and contribute to the growth of China-U.S. relations.

More than 400 guests from government, business and academic communities attended the gala, including Chinese Consul-General Zhang Qiyue, former U.S. Secretary of State Dr. Henry Kissinger, former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury W. Michael Blumenthal, Chairman of the National Committee Carla Hills and President of the National Committee Stephen Orlins.


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