12th China Salon Held in the Chinese Embassy
- Minister Li Kexin Spoke to Members of the Global Ties


On April 27th, More than 120 members of the Global Ties attended the 12th China Salon at the Chinese Embassy in the U.S., co-hosted by the organization and the Chinese Embassy. The event was moderated by Dr. Katherine Brown, President and CEO of the Global Ties. DCM and Minister Li Kexin of the Embassy delivered a speech on China's development path and China-U.S. relationship. Key points of Minister Li's speech are as follows:

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the reform and opening-up of China. Over the past 40 years, China's economy has developed at an average rate of 9.5%, and today it become the second largest economy in the world. More than 700 million Chinese People have been lifted out of poverty. Nevertheless, China still faces a huge development agenda. Our GDP per capita is about 14 percent of that of the U.S. and 25 percent of that of the European Union. The imbalance between the western areas like Qinghai and Guizhou and the east coast like Shanghai and Zhejiang, is just substantial. Air and water pollution as a trade-off of development, takes time, money and change of lifestyle to fix. All these requires a smart and stable policy. We will continue to reform and opening-up, and at the same time, promote our cooperation with our partners around the world. That leads to the gravity of the bilateral relations between our two countries.

China and the U.S. established diplomatic relations about 40 years ago. This is a parallel trajectory with China's opening-up strategy. Time has proved China made the right choice to have this relationship with the U.S.. I believe the U.S. also made the right choice. In the past four decades, China and the U.S. have built a deeply intertwined relationship, which has benefited the people of both countries. I firmly believe China and the U.S. should build on this good foundation, and develop an even more constructive and robust relationship. We cannot afford to breaking away from each other, because both of us have important domestic issues to address, because we face common challenges, because we as the two biggest economies in the world, take the global responsibilities.

But we do face difficulties today. The No. 1 issue maybe the perception thing, that is , how we see each other. We are at a crossroad, to make a choice. Do we see each other as partner, competitor, rival or even threat? The perception can be very different from reality. I would stress that the reality of China's intention has no change. We want to work closely with the U.S. and create growth and opportunities for both of us. But the worrying thing is that, some people in this country, especially with the Beltway, now see China as a threat. They like to look at the rear mirror, and take the forthcoming vehicle as a monster. The reality is, we are just in a bigger size, but not a monster. We want to drive safely, steadily and happily, together with the U.S. on solid track. So I do encourage American friends, especially the movers and shakers, to change their perception, and come back to the reality.

Many of you are concerned about the trade friction going on between China and the U.S., the market access and IP. President Xi's speech at Boao Forum a few weeks ago gave answers to all these quires. And our approach is to sit down and talk, and find the way out. Just put out a number for cutting trade deficit and ask the other p arty to do homework and come back, is not the way to reach a deal. Using the Section 301 investigation as a tool is even more counter-productive and will lead nowhere. The good news is that a high-level delegation from the U.S. side will visit Beijing for trade negotiations next week. I am not only crossing my fingers, but optimistic about the settlement of issue. Nobody wants a trade war.

There are many issues between us that are negotiable, but some are not. The issue of Taiwan is the one, because for China, it is not a diplomatic issue, but a sovereignty issue. The three Joint Communiques signed between China and the U.S. is the fundamental documents for our diplomatic relations. The gist of it is the One China Policy. This gives us a secured a framework. Within this framework, many good things could happen. But the risk we see today is that some people want to break this framework. The recent enacted Taiwan Travel Act is a very wrong move. My assessment is that such breakthroughs will finally make the possible impossible. And my real worry is that, any misjudgment on Taiwan issue will lead to unwanted consequences, because no politicians in China have any room of compromise on the issue of Taiwan if such framework is broke out. This is not in the U.S. interest.

Minister Li also exchanged views with the guests on a wide variety of issues, including China's investment environment, people-to-people exchanges between the two countries, the Korean Peninsular issue, public diplomacy, and etc..


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