Q: In this morning's briefing, Vice Foreign Minister Li Baodong said President Xi's attendance at the World Economic Forum in Davos would make him the first Chinese head of state to do so. Does China have any special considerations?
A: In the briefing this morning, Vice Foreign Minister Li Baodong briefed the press on details of President Xi's state visit to Switzerland, his attendance at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2017 in Davos and his visit to international organizations headquartered in Switzerland.
As we all know, the World Economic Forum has served as a weathervane for world economy and an important platform for political, international organizations, business, academic and media leaders from various countries to exchange their views on world economy and other major issues.
At present, the world economy is at a crucial stage of shifting from old to new drivers, and the traditional engine can no longer support economic recovery. Meanwhile, it is noted that we are confronted with sluggish international trade and investment, rising protectionism and adversely affected multilateral trade system, as well as questions and doubts on the process of economic globalization. Bearing the international community's concerns over economic globalization in mind, President Xi intends to state China's relevant propositions and views, encourage various parties to put economic globalization in perspective, and push forward economic globalization in a more inclusive and equitable way.
At the same time, China stands ready to work with other parties to analyze and find out the underlying causes for difficulties in world economic growth, and find a direction and way out.
Taking into consideration the international community's interest in China's economy, President Xi will elaborate on the achievements of China's reform and opening up and the experience of development, which will help various parties look at China's economy in a more objective and in-depth way.
We will keep you updated on the detailed information about President Xi's attendance at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting and his visit to Switzerland and international organizations there.
Q: When talking about international affairs in his farewell speech, US President Barack Obama said that "Russia or China cannot match our influence around the world-unless we give up what we stand for". Do you agree with that? How do you respond to that?
A: I would like to say something about it.
First, it seems that China's line of thinking is different from that of the US. When talking about its relations with the outside world, China who upholds democratization of international relations, focuses more on the public products it can provide and contributions it can make for the international community and other countries as it gains strength day by day, instead of what kind of influence it can exert over other countries in the world.
Second, if you insist on talking about influence, we Chinese people believe that it is up to the majority of the international community, rather than oneself to decide what kind of influence one is exercising in international affairs.
Q: The Chinese media recently carried reports about Chinese military aircraft's entry into the Air Defence Identification Zone (ADIZ) of the ROK, saying that it is inevitable to expand the sphere of activity as Chinese air and naval force grows. What is the position of the Chinese government?
A: I have taken note of comments made by the ROK media on that. The spokesperson of the Chinese Navy has issued a statement. The Chinese military has been organizing and gradually normalizing blue water training for ships and aircraft in international waters and airspace. The Chinese side has the right to conduct training that complies with international law and practice. You can go to the Defence Ministry for details.
Q: After his meeting with incoming US National Security Advisor Mike Flynn, chief of ROK's National Security Office Kim Kwan-jin said that the ROK will continue with the deployment of THAAD no matter China opposes it or not. What is China's comment on that?
A: You must be clear about China's stance on the issue of THAAD. We believe that ROK's consent to the deployment of THAAD by the US inside the ROK severely impacts China's strategic and security interests and disrupts the strategic balance of the region. The Chinese side stands firmly against that. The last thing we want to see is China-ROK relationship being compromised by the stubborn persistence of the ROK. That will be bad.
Q: Did Jack Ma of Alibaba notify the Chinese government before his meeting with US President-elect Donald Trump?
A: I am not aware of what you said, but I have noted the report about US President-elect Trump's meeting with Alibaba Executive Chairman Jack Ma.
Chinese and American companies engage frequently with each other. With the deepening of reform and opening-up and the development of outward-looking economy in China, there are more business activities between China and the US, and Chinese entrepreneurs are having more exchanges with their foreign counterparts. As I said days ago, we will not comment on business activities of each and every company, but I would like to say something objective about China-US business ties.
As we have been saying, China-US business relationship is in essence mutually beneficial for win-win outcomes. China and the US are the two largest economies in the world who enjoy economic complementarity and great potential for cooperation. Cooperation over the past nearly 40 years has created tangible economic and social benefit, such as job opportunities, for the two countries and two peoples, and generated critical driving force for world economic growth. We applaud the two governments' incentives and creation of enabling conditions for companies of the two countries to carry out more cooperation.
Q: Incoming US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will declare during his Senate confirmation hearing today that China's island construction in the South China Sea is illegal and the US refuses China's empty promise on the Korean nuclear issue. According to him, to deal with these issues, the world requires a more assertive US. What is China's comment on that?
A: I will not repeat China's position on the issue of the South China Sea as it is quite clear. What I want to say is that since the second half of last year, countries that have disputes with China over the South China Sea have come around to an agreement with us that these disputes should be peacefully resolved through consultation and negotiation with parties directly concerned, and that efforts should be made by China and ASEAN countries to safeguard peace and stability of the region. This hard-won situation is worth cherishing. We hope that parties outside the region will respect the aspiration and interests shared by countries in the region.
I believe you are also well aware of the position, policy and role of China on the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue. The Korean Peninsula lies right next to us. We care more about peace, stability and security of the Korean Peninsula than any other countries, as it also concerns our security interests. The Chinese side has been working actively and hard for denuclearization, peace and stability of the Peninsula. As is known to all, the crux and cause of the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue does not rest with the Chinese side. We hope that the US and the DPRK, as the most crucial parties, will meet each other halfway and create favorable conditions for the return of the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue to the Six-Party Talks.
Q: In an intelligence chief's briefing report last week given to President Obama, documents alleged that US President-elect Trump has substantial business interests in China. I wonder if you could comment on that?
A: There are quite a lot of arguments about business activities between China and the US. I will not make comment on that. As we have said time and again that thanks to China's reform and opening-up and the in-depth growth of China-US business relationship over the past 38 years, China and the US, as well as entrepreneurs of the two countries maintain close and frequent exchanges in the business field. We will not comment on each and every business activity.
Q: The Chinese Ministry of Education said in a notice yesterday that textbooks for primary and secondary school students will change the "eight-year" Chinese People's War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression into "14-year". Why is that?
A: The Chinese People's War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression is an important part of the World Anti-Fascist War. As a major theatre in the east, China went through the earliest and longest war against Fascist forces. The Chinese nation and people made enormous sacrifice for that, demonstrating the great national spirit of defying brutal aggression with valiant efforts.
Given that the struggle against Japanese aggression started as early as September 18, 1931 and continued throughout the following 14 years, the Chinese Ministry of Education made the requirement for such a revision in textbooks for primary and secondary schools. What I want to point out is that we are not trying to prolong the hatred but to call on the younger generation to cherish and uphold peace. Because only by keeping the history in mind, can we open up the future.