Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China
(CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC),
addresses the central foreign affairs meeting held on November 28-29, 2014, in Beijing.
Photo by Ma Zhancheng
Xi eyes more enabling
for China’s peaceful development
By Liu Hua, Liu Tong, Fang Dong and Ge Liang
Chinese President Xi Jinping looked forward to a more enabling international environment for China’s peaceful development as he delivered an address at a conference held in Beijing on November 28-29.
At the Central Conference on Work Relating to Foreign Affairs, Xi, who is also General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and Chairman of the Central Military Commission, underscored the importance of holding high the banner of peace, development and win-win cooperation, pursuing China’s overall domestic and international interests and its development and security priorities in a balanced way, focusing on the overriding goal of peaceful development and national renewal, upholding China’s sovereignty, security and development interests, fostering a more enabling international environment for peaceful development and maintaining and sustaining the important period of strategic opportunity for China’s development.
These efforts will ensure the realization of the “two centenary goals”(doubling the 2010 GDP and per capita income of urban and rural residents and finishing the building of a society of initial prosperity in all respects when the CPC celebrates its centenary and turning China into a modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced and harmonious when the People’s Republic of China marks its centenary) and the Chinese dream of the great renewal of the Chinese nation, Xi said.
The conference was presided over by Li Keqiang, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Premier of the State Council. Attending the conference were: Zhang Dejiang, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress; Yu Zhengsheng, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference; Liu Yunshan, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau and member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee; Wang Qishan, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau and Secretary of the Central Commission for Disciplinary Inspection of the CPC Central Committee and Zhang Gaoli, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Vice Premier of the State Council.
Convened by the central Party leadership to advance China’s diplomacy under new conditions, this important meeting aims to, following the guidance of the Deng Xiaoping theory, the important thought of the “Three Represents” and the Scientific Outlook on Development, fully implement the decisions of the 18th CPC National Congress and the Third and Fourth Plenums of the 18th CPC Central Committee, gain a full understanding of the changing international developments and China’s external environment, lay down the guidelines, basic principles, strategic goals and major mission of China’s diplomacy in the new era and endeavor to make new advances in China’s foreign relations.
In his address, Xi Jinping pointed out that since the 18th CPC National Congress, the central Party leadership, bearing in mind China’s domestic and international interests, has maintained continuity and consistency of China’s foreign policy, strengthened overall planning and taken bold initiatives, thus achieving notable progress.
“Keeping in mind new tasks that should be carried out under new conditions, we have worked hard to creatively pursue China’s diplomacy in both theory and practice, highlight the global significance of the Chinese dream and enrich the strategic thinking of peaceful development,” Xi said.
“We have advocated the building of a new type of international relations underpinned by win-win cooperation, put forward and followed a policy of upholding justice and pursuing shared interests and championed a new vision featuring common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security,” he said.
“We have endeavored to build a new model of major-country relations, put forward and practised a neighborhood policy featuring amity, sincerity, mutual benefit and inclusiveness as well as the guideline on China’s relations with Africa featuring sincerity, delivering outcomes, affinity and good faith,” he added.
Xi said these accomplishments would not have been possible without the dedication of comrades engaging in China’s foreign affairs, especially those stationed overseas. On behalf of the CPC Central Committee and the State Council, Xi Jinping paid high tribute and extended sincere greetings to all those working on the diplomatic front.
Xi Jinping made an incisive analysis of the evolving global developments and changing international architecture. He stressed that “to have a keen grasp of global developments and follow the underlying trend of the times is a crucially important and constant task that requires our abiding attention.”
China must keep abreast with the global development if it is to achieve its development, Xi said. “It is important to have a global perspective and deep understanding of the underlying trend of the times, make sound, accurate and thorough assessment of the changing international environment and dissect complex phemomena to uncover the essence and, in particular, gain a deep appreciation of the long-term trend.”
“We should be fully mindful of the complexity of the evolving international architecture, and we should also recognize that the growing trend toward a multi-polar world will not change,” Xi said.
“We should be fully aware that the global economic adjustment will not be smooth sailing; but we also need to recognize that economic globalization will not stop,” he said.
“We should be fully alert to the grave nature of international tensions and struggle; but we also need to recognize that peace and development, the underlying trend of our times, will remain unchanged. We should be keenly aware of the protracted nature of contest over the international order; on the other hand, we need to recognize that the direction of reform of the international system will remain unchanged,” said the Chinese leader.
“We should fully recognize the uncertainty in China’s neighboring environment, but we should also realize that the general trend of prosperity and stability in the Asia-Pacific region will not change,” he added.
Xi Jinping emphasized that today’s world is changing. It is a world in which new opportunities and new challenges keep emerging, a world in which the international system and international order are going through deep adjustment and a world in which the relative international forces are in profound shift in favor of peace and development.
“In observing the world, we should not allow our views to be blocked by intricate developments. Instead, we should observe the world through the prism of historical laws. All factors considered, we can see that China is still in an important period of strategic opportunity for its development endeavor in which much can be accomplished. Our biggest opportunity lies in China’s steady development and the growth in its strength. On the other hand, we should be mindful of various risks and challenges and skillfully defuse potential crises and turn them into opportunities for China’s development.”
Xi noted that China has entered a crucial stage of achieving the great renewal of the Chinese nation. China’s relations with the rest of the world are going through profound changes; its interactions with the international community have become closer than ever before. China’s dependence on the world and its involvement in international affairs are deepening, so are the world’s dependence on China and its impact on China. “Therefore, in projecting and adopting plans for reform and development, we must give full consideration to both domestic and international markets, both domestic and foreign resources and both domestic and international rules, and use them in a coordinated way.”
Xi stressed that China should develop a distinctive diplomatic approach befitting its role of a major country. “We should, on the basis of summing up our past practice and experience, enrich and further develop our diplomatic perceptions, and conduct diplomacy with a salient Chinese feature and a Chinese vision. We should uphold the CPC’s leadership and socialism with distinctive Chinese features, and stick to our development path, social system, cultural tradition and values.
“We should continue to follow the independent foreign policy of peace, always base ourselves on our own strength in pursuing the development of the country and the nation, and follow our own path unswervingly. While we pursue peaceful development, we will never relinquish our legitimate rights and interests, or allow China’s core interests to be undermined. We should promote democracy in international relations, and uphold the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence,” Xi said.
“We are firm in our position that all countries, regardless of their size, strength and level of development, are equal members of the international community and that the destiny of the world should be decided by people of all countries. We should uphold international justice and, in particular, speak up for developing countries.”
Xi Jinping underlined the importance of pursuing win-win cooperation and promoting a new type of international relations featuring win-win cooperation. “We should continue to follow the win-win strategy of opening-up and a win-win approach in every aspect of our external relations such as political, economic, security and cultural fields.”
“We should uphold justice and pursue shared interests. This means we should act in good faith, value friendship, and champion and uphold justice. We should abide by the principle of non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs, respect the independent choice of development path and social system by people of other countries, promote peaceful resolution of differences and disputes between countries through dialogue and consultation, and oppose the willful use or threat of force.”
Xi pointed out that in conducting China’s diplomacy in both current stage and in the time to come, “We should take an overall approach to national security, strengthen the confidence of the Chinese people in the path, theories and system of socialism with distinctive Chinese features, and ensure China’s durable peace and stability.”
“We should seek other countries’ understanding of and support for the Chinese dream, which is about peace, development, cooperation and win-win outcomes. What we pursue is the wellbeing of both the Chinese people and the people of all other countries.”
“We should firmly uphold China’s territorial sovereignty, maritime rights and interests and national unity, and properly handle territorial and island disputes,” Xi said. “We should uphold China’s development opportunities and space and work hard to form a network of high interdependence and mutual benefit through extensive and mutually beneficial business and technological cooperation. We should make more friends while abiding by the principle of non-alignment and build a global network of partnership.”
“We should increase China’s soft power, give a good Chinese narrative, and better communicate China’s message to the world,” Xi said.
Xi Jinping put forward requirements on expanding and broadening the agenda of China’s diplomatic strategy under new conditions. He stressed that “we should promote neighborhood diplomacy, turn China’s neighborhood areas into a community of common destiny, continue to follow the principles of amity, sincerity, mutual benefit and inclusiveness in conducting neighborhood diplomacy, promote friendship and partnership with our neighbors, foster an amicable, secure and prosperous neighborhood environment, and boost win-win cooperation and connectivity with our neighbors.”
“We should manage well relations with other major countries, build a sound and stable framework of major-country relations, and expand cooperation with other major developing countries,” Xi said. “We should strengthen unity and cooperation with other developing countries and closely integrate our own development with the common development of other developing countries.”
“We should advance multilateral diplomacy, work to reform the international system and global governance, and increase the representation and say of China and other developing countries.”
Xi said, “We should step up results-oriented cooperation, actively advance the building of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road, work hard to expand the converging interests of various parties, and promote win-win cooperation through results-oriented cooperation.”
“We should truly uphold justice and pursue shared interests and do a good job in providing foreign aid. We should protect China’s overseas interests and continue to improve our capacity to provide such protection.”
Xi Jinping pointed out that to fully advance China’s diplomacy under new conditions, “we must enhance the central and unified leadership of the Party, reform and improve institutions and mechanisms concerning foreign affairs, step up their coordination among different sectors, government bodies and localities, increase strategic input, ensures well-regulated foreign affairs management, and strengthen the ranks of official managing foreign affairs, so as to provide strong support for opening new horizon in China’s diplomacy.”
Li Keqiang pointed out when presiding over the meeting that General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important and well-focused address provides important guidance for conducting China’s diplomacy both in the current stage and in time to come. All local governments and government bodies should gain a thorough understanding of the address, act in accordance with it and be guided by the decision of the central Party leadership in both thinking and action.
“To this end, we must base ourselves on China’s national condition of being in the preliminary stage of socialism and of being a major developing country, work hard to maintain and make good use of the period of strategic opportunity for China’s development and conduct diplomacy in the interest of building a society of initial prosperity in all respects and meeting the strategic goal of achieving the great renewal of the Chinese nation,” Li said.
“We must strive to build socialism with distinctive Chinese features, give top priority to economic development, manage our own affairs well, continue to enhance China’s economic competitiveness, cultural influence and overall strength and provide strong support for achieving the strategic goal of China’s diplomacy.”
“We must continue to pursue both an independent foreign policy of peace and peaceful development, uphold international justice, work for greater democracy in international relations, promote mutual benefits, advance economic diplomacy, jointly address multiple global challenges, promote the progress of human civilization and continue to open up new horizon in China’s diplomacy,” said Li.
State Councilor Yang Jiechi, who made a summary report of the conference, said that General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important address, which embodies the central Party leadership’s latest creative achievement in diplomatic theory and practices, is of great significance in guiding China’s diplomacy in both the current stage and in time to come.
“We should gain a full understanding of General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important address and act on it.”
“We should have a keen appreciation of the new environment, tasks and requirements facing China’s diplomacy, be guided by this important address in thinking, understanding and action and continuously enhance our ability to handle complex international affairs,” Yang said. “All government bodies and local governments should truly act in accordance with this important address, encourage all parties to get actively involved in carrying out foreign exchange and endeavor to make new progress in conducting China’s diplomacy.”
Leading officials from the CPC International Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Culture, Information Office of the State Council, Headquarters of the General Staff of the People’s Liberation Army, Zhejiang Province and the Chinese Embassy in the United States spoke at the conference.
The conference was attended by members of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, members of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee, relevant leading officials of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, state councilors, president of the Supreme People’s Court, procurator-general of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, relevant leading officials of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and members of the Central Military Commission.
The conference was participated by the following officials: leading officials from provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities under direct jurisdiction of the central government as well as the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, cities separately listed in the state plan, relevant central Party, government and military departments and some enterprises and financial institutions under the direct management of the central government, as well as Chinese ambassadors and consuls-general with ambassadorial rank posted overseas, Chinese representatives to international organizations and commissioners of the Foreign Ministry to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the Macao Special Administrative Region.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (center of rear row), also general secretary of the Communist
Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC),
addresses the central foreign affairs meeting held on November 28 to 29, 2014, in Beijing.
Photo by Ma Zhancheng