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China says will help weak countries achieve better growth

- Anuj Kumar Adhikari, BEIJING

Mar 9, 2018-Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Thursday said China will stand up for small and weak countries and help less developed countries achieve better growth.

“China will stand for equality of all countries, large or small, and will respect different systems and civilisations,” he said.

The minister said this in Beijing at a press conference held on the sidelines of the ongoing 13th session of Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), a top political advisory body and National People’s Congress, the country’s national legislature.

Wang answered the queries of journalists from China and around the world on wide range of issues including Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), highlights of China’s

foreign affairs in 2018, its relationship with US, India, Russia, Japan, South China Sea issue, ASEAN community, among other foreign matters, during the press conference that lasted for two hours.

China will find constructive ways to settle regional and international issues, Wang said. He reiterated China’s longstanding position on the sovereignty of other countries and said China will never meddle with other countries’ internal affairs. 

Wang stated that China has come to the fore in championing global governance and open global economy due to its BRI project launched five years ago. He said the China-initiated project evidently shows that China is opportunity for its partners, not a threat.

Wang said BRI requires joint contribution from all partner countries and would yield shared benefits to them. He said that as all partners have equal say, no country is dominating the process. He wiped out scope of backroom deals saying “planning and implementation of BRI projects have been discussed by the participants in the open.”

Recalling the BRI forum for International Co-operation held in China in last May, Wang said that the participation of 140 countries in the forum is a clear vote of confidence from international community. He said BRI projects are adding momentum to the economic and social development of the host countries.  

“Our goal is not only to strengthen the physical connectivity of infrastructure, but also to improve the institutional connectivity of policy, rules and standards,” said Wang, adding, “BRI projects must be high standard as well as result-oriented; high quality as well as economically viable; beneficial to the world as well as to China.”

Countering the criticism against the China’s growing influence in the world, the Foreign Minister said some westerners assessed that the country is either ‘collapsing’ or ‘threatening’.

He rebuffed claims saying that as China continues to grow, the first theory has become a laughing stock and on threatening issue, Wang said China has been a leading contributor to global economic growth as China’s contribution is bigger than Japan, America and the Euro Zone combined.

“China accounts for more than 70 percent of poverty reduction worldwide, a miracle in human history,” said Wang.

Responding to a query on China-India relationship following the standoff situation in Doklam in 2017, Minister Wang stressed avoiding mutual suspicion and said that “with political trust, not even the Himalayas can stop us from friendly exchanges.

Published: 09-03-2018 08:41

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