Ambassador Cui Tiankai's Interview with "the Heat" of CCTV American
2015/09/20

 

 

 

On September 18, 2015, Ambassador Cui Tiankai had an TV interview with Mr. Anand Naidoo, host of the CCTV America's flagship talk show "the Heat",on President Xi Jinping's forthcoming state visit to the United States and current China-US relations.

The following is the link to the interview:

http://china.cctv-america.com/2015/09/18/the-heat-president-xis-state-visit-to-the-us/?from=singlemessage&isappinstalled=0

 

The following is the full transcript of the interview:

Q: Mr. Ambassador, thank you for joining us.

A: My pleasure.

Q: You're welcome sir. You have attended previous meetings between Xi Jinping and President Barack Obama. What are President Xi Jinping's key objectives during this visit to the U.S.?

A: Well, this is first state visit by President Xi Jinping to the United States. But he has already established a good working relationship with President Obama. They met the second year before last. Last November, they had (a) very substantive and long meeting in Beijing, right in the center of Zhong Nan Hai. So this time I'm sure the two Presidents will continue that strategic dialogue. The relationship, the major issues involved and perhaps also our international situation, and that will give us a clear sense, a clearer sense of direction where this relationship should be going and how we should achieve the goal of having a, or establishing a new model of major country relationship.

Q: Talking about international cooperation, of course, these countries are two big economic powers, this's also been a great deal of cooperation on global issues, things like climate change, the Iran nuclear deal. How crucial is it for these two countries to ensure the first visit is a success?

A: Well, first of all, we have to make sure this visit is a great success for the sake of the bi-lateral relationship, because we have such important strategic, comprehensive and complex relationship between China and United States. And, it will certainly serve the interest of peoples of both countries if the visit is a great success.

Number two, China and the United States are two of the major countries in the world; we are both permanent members of the United Nations, United Nations Security Council. We are the two largest economy (sic) in the world, although the gap between is too huge. So we do share the responsibility that we develop a healthy, sustained and stable relationship and try to make our joint contribution to the solution of international regional issues.

Q: China's growth in the past 30 years, 35 years rather, has been phenomenal, as you just pointed that out… one of the biggest economies in the world with United States. What is President Xi Jinping's vision for China? ...and what is the message that he's going to be bringing to the United States... not just the United States leaders but also to the American people?

A: I think the vision of the President, actually is the vision of the Chinese people, is very simple, it is what we call a Chinese dream. The revitalization of the Chinese nation… and we do have two centenary goals, I think during the visit, President Xi will present this thinking, this goal and China's peaceful development, China's

development strategy, China's foreign policy and our views of the

international order, not to only President Obama but also to the

American People.

Q: Of course there's a great deal of cooperation between these two countries… but there are areas of dissension between the two countries, one of those areas is U.S accusations of Chinese cyber-attacks on U.S government institutions, on U.S companies that's led the U.S to say that this puts a significant strain on the bi-lateral relationship if not resolved. How can this be resolved?

A: Well I think China and the United States are two very different countries in terms of the history, culture, political system, economic development and maybe also in many other aspects. So it's all natural that we do have differences between us. Sometimes they

are important differences, but still, our shared interests, outweigh,

any possible differences. This is quite clear; we have much larger

common interests than any possible differences between us.

As for the differences, I think we have to handle them, manage them in a very constructive spirit. Because confrontation would not help either side. For instance, the issue of cyber security, we are the two largest economies of the world. Both countries are very dependent on cyber space and the United States is the most advanced country technologically speaking, in cyber space. China has the largest number of internet users, so we do have a common need and common interest to respond to cyber threat, to manage the cyber space and make sure that it would not be disruptive to the economic and social functions of the two countries.

I think this is the common interest, so I believe the two countries have to focus on this common need, try to work out a set of rules or joint approach, to deal with this new issue, rather than accusing each other or and having some conflicts even confrontation in this area. Because it will not help us to solve the problem, it will only make things worse for both countries.

Q: Another difference, and this is a significant difference, is the criticism we had in the United States, over Chinese territorial claims in the South China Sea. China says it's mainly protecting its sovereignty but it has lead to tensions between the two countries, how do you go about easing those tensions?

A: Well, first of all, and honestly I have to point out that what happens in South China Sea is not an issue between China and the United States. Because the United States, according to the official position of the U.S government, the United States has no territorial claims in South China Sea. So as far as the territorial issue is concerned, this is not and should not be an issue between China and the United States. So sometimes I'm quite puzzled why the U.S or some people in the U.S are making this an issue between us, this should not be an issue between us. As you said rightly just now, what China is doing is just to defend our last ending position on territory integrating in South China Sea.

Q: We've also had a lot over the past year, past two years I would say, about the so-called U.S pivot to Asia, or re-balancing as it's sometimes called. This is a bigger American military presence in the South China Sea in the pacific; does this contribute to instability of the area, to more tensions in the area?

A: I think this is a very good question. There have been many versions of this pivoting or re-balancing or returning to Asia whatsoever. But if look back, as the situation in the last few years, certainly there are new sources of instability, perhaps because of this policy, because of this approach. So I think the United States, I would suggest that the United States would think hard about the real effect this approach has had in the region. Is it helping us to maintain greater stability and greater prosperity or is it working in the opposite direction?

Q: Well, there are disputes but one also has to look at the two-way trade between these two countries, it now worth 550 billion dollars a year yet differences do remain. United States and its allies have excluded China for the Trans-pacific partnership. U.S stayed away from the Chinese-lead Asian Infrastructure Bank, is also being debated in the United States here on the merits of President Xi Jinping's economic regional initiative, the One Belt One Road Initiative. Where do you see economic cooperation going in the future?

A: Well, you see bi-laterally as you said, bilateral trade is growing very fast and two-way investment is also growing very fast. So economically, the two countries are increasingly interdependent. We in China, we want very much to see a stronger growth in the U.S economy.

I think many people in the U.S would also want to see a strong growth of the Chinese economy, because this is in our mutual interests, and regionally speaking, the Asia-pacific region is in need of closer regional cooperation and economic integration and the region is in need of much better infrastructure building. That's why we proposed this Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank, and as the Chinese economy grows and expands, the growing need for connectivity between China and our neighbors and even beyond. So the economic force is driving the initiatives such as One Belt One Road and other initiatives China is taking regionally.

And globally speaking, since we are the two biggest economies in the world and we are both members of the G20. We are important members in such international institutions as IMF, World Bank, WTO and so on. We have shared responsibility to improve global economic governance to make more effective, more efficient, more responsive to the growing needs globally. So I think at the level of bilateral and regional and global cooperation, the need is growing, that our two countries should really work with each other, not work against each other. So I hope people in the United States would have better understanding of the global picture of China's strategy, not only for its own economic development, but also for regional prosperity, for global economic governance and focus on the common need and common interest and do all these things together with China.

Q: Talking about the two countries working together, we've already seen a great deal of cooperation on the climate change and how to tackle that between China and the United States. This, of course, is a big conference coming up in Paris, climate change conference towards the end of this year. Will the United States and China lead the way, come up with a joint initiative of some kind, a joint plan of some kind, to resolve these major issues that face the world right now?

A: Yeah, climate change is indeed, one of the major global challenges that we face today, and last November during President Obama's visit to China, China and United States issued joint statement of Climate Change which made a very strong and positive impact on the global process on the international, multilateral negotiations.

I'm quite confident, during president Xi's visit this time, the two countries would be able to agree on some joint action on Climate Change which will again, make very strong and positive impact on the global process, especially on the Paris conference you just mentioned. Of course we have to work with other members of the international community. China and the United States, our two countries, cannot solve this Climate Change issue just by ourselves. We need global cooperation, global efforts.

Q: Of course there are other formidable challenges in the world right now, the scourge of terrorism, that the world is facing right now, nuclear non-proliferation. How that issue has come up, sectarian warfare. When you look at these things, do these countries need each other more now than they have before?

A: Of course, yes. As you said, we are faced with so many regional and global challenges, I think all of them would require, would call for, much closer coordination and cooperation in the international community, especially among the major countries. And since China and the United States are both permanent members of the United Nation Security Council, we do share this responsibility.

Q: Earlier this month, China hosted a huge parade in Beijing to commemorate the end of WWII, well some in the United States who said that this is China flexing its muscle, how do you respond to that?

A: The parade was a great success, and I think there had been very

positive international comments on the parade, and people in China

welcomed it very warmly. I think the purpose of having this parade is not to show muscle or not to intimidate anybody. But just to remind people, what kind of sacrifice we made for peace 70 years ago, and how we should work together to make sure that there's no longer such a global war. There's no longer such atrocities in the world, peace could be maintained, and our peoples, people of China, people of the United States, people of the other countries, can have the expectations of living in peace and achieving greater, better standards of life. I think this is the purpose of the parade. And I think the message was well-received globally.

Q: We've just seen one area of cooperation and this has been making news in the past few hours and that is United States has repatriated to China, one of China's much wanted economic fugitives. What do you make of that?

A: Anti-corruption is an area that our two countries should have closer coordination or cooperation. Because it is against the law of both countries, it is against the economic interests, the sound economic development of both countries and it's certainly immoral. So I hope that there would be even more such cases of cooperation between our two countries. No country should be used as a so-called "safe haven" for corruption or such crimes.

Q: Ambassador, thank you very much for joining us.

A: Thank you! My great pleasure!

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