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Friday, October 01, 2021
ANBOUND's Observation: Subtle Messages in the Speech of Chinese Ambassador to the U.S.
Chan Kung

Not long ago, Qin Gang, Chinese Ambassador to the United States, stated that the current U.S.-China relations are still in a very difficult period. Earlier Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S. President Joe Biden had had a phone conversation, described by the Chinese media as timely and crucial. This should be the first time for China to publicly express its understanding of this phone communication. During the call, President Xi gave a comprehensive and clear explanation of China's principles, positions, and propositions on the issue of U.S.-China relations.

President Xi emphasized that it is necessary to improve the bilateral relations, and this should be done on the basis of respecting each other's core concerns and properly managing differences. He said that relevant departments of the two countries can continue to engage in dialogue and promote coordination and cooperation on climate change, pandemic prevention and control, economic recovery, and major international and regional issues. In addition, he mentioned that both the U.S. and China should tap into more potential areas of cooperation.

President Biden also made a positive statement in this regard. He believes that there is no reason for U.S.-China relations to fall into conflict due to competition. Both sides should make efforts to avoid misunderstandings, misjudgments and accidental conflicts, and work to push the bilateral relations back on track.

The two heads of state also agreed to continue to maintain regular contacts through various means, and will work towards conducting extensive dialogues to create favorable conditions for the development of bilateral relations. This would also mean the contacts between the U.S. and China will be unfolded in the future.

Qin Gang believes that in the development of U.S.-China relations, the two countries are bound to have certain frictions, and it is through these frictions that both can learn to understand each other, and seek for means for both the U.S. and China to get along well. This is also what has been proposed by China. This in fact, is the co-opetition between the U.S. and China as defined by ANBOUND back in 2019.

The Ambassador also noted that both countries should respect each other, cooperate, and coexist peacefully. His task therefore, is to shorten the friction period and make the process smoother with less intensity.

The current turn of event indicates that China intends to seize the opportunity to extend an olive branch to the U.S. The speech of Chinese Ambassador to the United States also carries the same implication.