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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lin Jian’s Regular Press Conference on May 10, 2024

2024-05-10 22:00

From May 12 to 20, at the invitation of Uzbekistan’s Prime Minister Abdulla Aripov, Kazakhstan’s Deputy Prime Minister Serik Zhumangarin and Kyrgyzstan’s Prime Minister Akylbek Japarov, Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Vice Premier of the State Council Liu Guozhong will visit Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan and hold the Seventh Meeting of the China-Uzbekistan Inter-governmental Cooperation Committee.

From May 13 to 16, at the invitation of Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi, Pakistan’s Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mohammad Ishaq Dar will pay an official visit to China and hold the fifth round of the China-Pakistan Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue.

From May 13 to 14, at the invitation of Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi, ROK Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yul will visit China.

Xinhua News Agency: Can you brief us on President Xi Jinping’s visit to Hungary?

Lin Jian: On May 9 local time, President Xi Jinping attended the welcoming ceremony in Budapest held by Hungarian President Tamás Sulyok and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and held separate talks with them. President Xi met with the press with Prime Minister Orbán. Leaders of the two countries announced the decision to upgrade the China-Hungary relationship to an all-weather comprehensive strategic partnership for the new era.

President Xi noted Hungary was one of the first countries to recognize the People’s Republic of China. The relationship is now at its best in history. Our traditional friendship has taken deep roots among the two peoples and our cooperation reaped fruitful outcomes in various fields. This year marks the 75th anniversary of diplomatic ties between China and Hungary. The two sides need to take stock of the valuable experience and chart the way forward. First, we need to uphold equality, follow a development path suited to our national conditions, and keep our future firmly in our own hands. The long-lasting friendship between China and Hungary is neither targeted against nor subject to restrictions from any third party. Second, we need to uphold mutual trust and mutual assistance, always render each other understanding and firmly support each other in safeguarding our respective sovereignty, security and development interests. Third, we need to uphold win-win cooperation, expand cooperation in various fields within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative and forge synergy between our respective development strategies. Fourth, we need to uphold fairness and justice, stand on the right side of history, and strive to make positive contributions to the cause of peace and development of mankind.

President Xi underlined China appreciates Hungary’s long-term commitment to a friendly policy toward China and its unequivocal and firm support for China on issues related to Taiwan, Hong Kong and human rights. China firmly supports Hungary in pursuing a development path suited to its national conditions and stands ready to cement political mutual trust with Hungary, strengthen exchanges between the two countries’ governments, legislatures and political parties and continue to firmly support each other’s core interests and major concerns. China’s modernization will surely bring more opportunities to Hungary and other countries in the world. China welcomes Hungary to become a companion on the Chinese path to modernization. China is ready to work with Hungary to further synergize development strategies of the two countries, leverage the role of mechanisms such as the China-Hungary Inter-Governmental Belt and Road Cooperation Committee, advance cooperation in infrastructure, green energy and other fields in an orderly manner, and complete the construction of the Hungary-Serbia railway as scheduled. We will actively expand cooperation in emerging areas such as clean energy and artificial intelligence. It is hoped that Hungary will take the opportunity of taking on the rotating presidency of the EU in the second half of this year to promote the steady and sound development of China-EU relations. The cooperation between China and Central and Eastern European countries (CEEC) has a strong internal driving force. It is hoped that Hungary will continue to play an important role in promoting the China-CEEC cooperation to better benefit people of various countries.

Following the talks, leaders of the two countries witnessed the exchange of multiple bilateral cooperation documents on Belt and Road cooperation, economy and trade, investment, science and technology, culture and agriculture. The two sides issued the Joint Statement Between the People’s Republic of China and Hungary on the Establishment of An All-Weather Comprehensive Strategic Partnership for the New Era and the Outcome List of President Xi Jinping’s State Visit to Hungary.

During his trip to Europe, President Xi was given high-level reception by leaders of all three countries and warm welcome from the people there. From the shepherd’s song in Hautes-Pyrénées to the cheering crowds in Serbia and to the same young Hungarian girl who presented flowers to President Xi 15 years ago as well as this time, these moving and heart-warming moments reflect that the friendship between China and relevant countries is deeply rooted in people’s hearts and the bilateral relationships enjoy profound public support. We have every confidence in the prospects of China’s relations with France, Serbia and Hungary, and will work to make the China-EU relations more strategic, stable, constructive and mutually beneficial and promote the steady and sustained progress in China-EU relations.

Reuters: The Philippines’ National Security Advisor today called for the Chinese diplomats to be expelled over a disinformation campaign. Would the Foreign Ministry like to comment on this matter?

Lin Jian: The Philippines’ response shows exactly their guilty conscience in the face of facts and evidence and how exasperated and desperate they have become. We ask the Philippines to ensure that Chinese diplomats can carry out their duty normally, and to stop provocations and infringements. The Philippines needs to quit denying the facts and must not make reckless moves that will only backfire on the Philippines itself.

China News Service: It was reported that two Jordanian humanitarian aid convoys on their way to Erez crossing in Gaza were attacked by Israeli settlers. Many countries condemned the attacks and urged Israel to observe relevant laws and ensure the smooth entry into Gaza of the humanitarian aid convoys. What is China’s comment?

Lin Jian: China strongly condemns the attacks on the Jordanian humanitarian aid convoys. The actions violate the international law and international humanitarian law. The protracted conflict has made the humanitarian situation extremely dire in Gaza. We urge Israel to earnestly fulfill its obligations under the international humanitarian law, and cooperate with and provide security safeguard for humanitarian agencies’ aid effort.

AFP: The US Commerce Department added 37 Chinese entities to its Entity List for export control yesterday, including some entities suspected of shipping controlled items to Russia. What is China’s response?

Lin Jian: We strongly oppose US abuse of entity list and other export controls to go after Chinese companies. China and Russia have the right to normal economic and trade cooperation, and such cooperation should not come under external interference or constraint. I would like to stress that for a long period of time, the US has suppressed Chinese companies citing their “risks to national security”, but has failed to produce any evidence.

We urge the US to stop overstretching the concept of national security, stop politicizing trade and tech issues or using them as weapons, and stop abusing various types of sanctions lists to suppress Chinese companies. China will continue to do what is necessary to defend the lawful rights and interests of Chinese companies.

Global Times: It was reported that at a recent forum hosted by McCain Institute, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that in international trade, China relies on “unfair advantage,” not “comparative advantage.” What is China’s comment on this?

Lin Jian: The remarks by the US side lack economic common sense and ignore the facts. The Chinese economy has grown strong by participating in the vast global market. China observes international trade norms and the rules of market economy, relies on our mega-size market, complete range of supporting industries, rich human resources and full market competition. These are all China’s comparative advantages.

The US overstretches the concept of national security on economy and trade, and disrupts normal international trade by engaging in decoupling and severing of supply chains and building “small yards with high fences.” It also adopted the Inflation Reduction Act and other measures to subsidize specific US industries, and included in the Act a large number of discriminatory arrangements targeting foreign companies, and in particular measures to restrict and keep out China. Aren’t these moves—moves that promote de-globalization, exclude competition and violate the law of market economy—aimed at seeking “unfair advantage?” 

Apart from blaming China, the US itself has been saying one thing and doing another. This is typical double standard and bullying. China asks the US to respect the law of market economy, observe international trade rules, stop irresponsible smears and vilification, stop overstretching the concept of national security, and correct its non-market policies and practices.

Reuters: A group of American lawmakers on Wednesday unveiled a bill that would make it easier for the Biden administration to impose export controls on AI models, citing the risk of US tech getting into the wrong hands. Would the Foreign Ministry like to comment?

Lin Jian: Facts show that cooperation on economy, trade and investment is good for both China and the US and people in both countries stand to benefit. Linking trade and tech issues to politics and ideologies and turning them into tools or even pushing for decoupling and severing of supply chains will only disrupt normal trade and mutual investment bilaterally and globally. It will also destabilize the industrial and supply chains. This serves the interests of no one, including the US. 

The US should honor its commitments of not seeking decoupling from China and not holding back China’s development, stop pursuing protectionism, stop technological blockade and restriction against China, and stop disrupting international trade order. China will do what is necessary to firmly safeguard its lawful rights and interests.

Bloomberg: The Biden administration is poised to unveil a sweeping decision on China tariffs as soon as next week. That’s expected to target key strategic sectors such as EVs. So it sounds like more tariffs coming. Does the Foreign Ministry have a comment?

Lin Jian: For anything specific, I’d refer you to competent authorities. Section 301 tariffs imposed by the former US administration on China have severely disrupted normal trade and economic exchanges between China and the US. The WTO has already ruled those tariffs against WTO rules. Instead of ending those wrong practices, the US continues to politicize trade issues, abuse the so-called review process of Section 301 tariffs and plan tariff hikes. This will just double the US’s fault.

We urge the US to follow WTO rules, lift all additional tariffs on China and not to impose new ones. China will take all necessary measures to defend its rights and interests.

Beijing Youth Daily: We noted that Director-General of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) Pierre Krähenbühl said that China’s voice on international cooperation in humanitarian affairs is very significant. He looked forward to strengthening cooperation with China in promoting international humanitarian cause and implementing humanitarian law so as to make greater contributions to global peace, development and progress. What’s your comment? Could you share with us China’s contributions to international humanitarianism?

Lin Jian: We noted the report. The Chinese government attaches great importance to international humanitarian cause. As President Xi Jinping stressed, humanitarianism is the greatest consensus that is able to unite different civilizations. The ideas contained in traditional Chinese culture are in harmony with the mission of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. China is an active supporter, participant and contributor to the international humanitarian cause. Over the past 120 years since its inception, Red Cross Society of China (RCSC), the oldest humanitarian organization in China, has played an important role in major disaster relief and protection of lives and health. When contributing to China’s development, RCSC also gives the rest of the world a window on how peace-loving Chinese value lives and how China upholds the vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind and actively participates in international humanitarian affairs. RCSC’s work is widely acclaimed in the international community. Pierre Krähenbühl’s remarks are a good case in point. In 2022, RCSC received the Henry Davison Award, the highest distinction of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. This says a lot about the recognition given to RCSC’s work, and even to China’s development and contribution.

In a world where the humanitarian situation remains acute, and conflicts and crisis in some regions are flaring up, a joint response is urgently required to meet huge demand for humanitarian assistance. China will continue upholding the vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind, actively participate in international humanitarian affairs, and contribute to global peace and humanity’s well-being.  

CCTV: I’d like to follow up on your announcement that Pakistani Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mohammad Ishaq Dar will visit China and hold the fifth round of China-Pakistan Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue. How does China comment on the current relations with Pakistan? What is China’s expectation for the visit?

Lin Jian: China and Pakistan are all-weather strategic cooperative partners and ironclad friends. In recent years, the two countries have maintained close high-level exchanges and interactions at all levels, jointly responded to the evolving international and regional landscape, deepened mutually beneficial cooperation, and further strengthened the friendship between the two countries. Right after this year’s elections in Pakistan were concluded, President Xi Jinping, Premier Li Qiang and Chairman Zhao Leji sent congratulatory messages to Pakistani leaders to extend our sincere congratulations and best wishes.

This visit is the first official visit to China by Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mohammad Ishaq Dar after he took office. It is also an important part of the institutionalized interactions between the Chinese and Pakistani foreign ministries. China would like to work with Pakistan to take this visit as an opportunity to deliver on the important common understandings between the leaders, carry forward the traditional friendship, step up strategic communication and coordination, deepen practical cooperation in various areas, upgrade the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, deepen the China-Pakistan all-weather strategic cooperative partnership, and accelerate the building of an even closer China-Pakistan community with a shared future in the new era.

Phoenix TV: It’s reported that “Taiwan’s Representative in Japan” Hsieh Chang-ting said that 37 Japanese Diet Members plan to attend the “president-elect’s inauguration” to be held on May 20. What’s China’s comment?

Lin Jian: There is but one China in the world. Taiwan is an inalienable part of China’s territory. The Government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China. Taiwan has never been a country and there’s no such thing as “president of Taiwan”.

The Taiwan question is purely China’s internal affair. Japan made a clear commitment in the China-Japan Joint Statement, “The Government of Japan recognizes the Government of the People’s Republic of China as the sole legal Government of China. The Government of the People’s Republic of China reiterates that Taiwan is an inalienable part of the territory of the People’s Republic of China. The Government of Japan fully understands and respects this position of the Government of the People’s Republic of China, and it firmly maintains its position under Article 8 of the Potsdam Proclamation.” Article 8 of the Potsdam Proclamation made it clear that the terms of the Cairo Declaration shall be carried out, and what the Cairo Declaration mainly touches upon is that the territories Japan has stolen from the Chinese shall be restored to China. Japan has more than once made serious commitments to China on the Taiwan question, including not supporting “two Chinas”, “one China, one Taiwan” or “Taiwan independence,” and only maintaining people-to-people and region-to-region exchanges with Taiwan. This is what happened in history and the stance and principles that Japan must uphold.

We seriously urge Japan to adhere to the principles and spirit of the four political documents between China and Japan, take concrete actions to demonstrate its commitment to the one-China principle, refrain from emboldening and supporting “Taiwan independence” separatist forces in whatever form, and keep the Taiwan Strait peaceful and stable rather than do the opposite. Our message to the DPP authorities: making provocations to seek “Taiwan independence” with external forces will not succeed; anyone who sell the national interests of the country will be held accountable by history.

China Review News: A question on the interaction between Japan and Taiwan. It’s reported that on May 9, Tsai Ing-wen conferred a medal on former Japanese Ambassador to China Hideo Tarumi in Taipei, in recognition of his contributions to Taiwan-Japan relations. Tarumi said that Taiwan and Japan work hand in hand with close affinity, and he has a stronger sense of identity with Taiwan. On that day, Lai Ching-te also met with Tarumi and showed willingness to strengthen friendship. What’s China’s comment?

Lin Jian: The person you mentioned has frequently made irresponsible remarks after retirement and done things against professional ethics that breach the commitment of the Japanese government to the one-China principle. We urge Japan to abide by the principles and spirit of the four political documents between China and Japan, strengthen discipline on the person concerned, and not interfere in China’s internal affairs or send wrong signals to “Taiwan independence” separatist forces in whatever form. The DPP authorities purposely staged the political theater to ingratiate with Japan, sell Taiwan out and seek “Taiwan independence” by soliciting foreign support. This self-degrading act will only expose themselves to more ridicule in the world.

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