As an ancient Chinese litterateur wrote, “Time stops for no one, and the seasons keep changing.”
Over half of 2019 has passed in the blink of an eye, and the major country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics has kept cleaving waves and forging ahead under the guidance of Xi Jinping thought on Diplomacy.
During the past half-year, the country has made remarkable achievements in win-win-cooperation one after another, constantly writing new chapters of building a new type of international relations and a community with a shared future for mankind.
The busy schedule of Chinese President Xi Jinping in the first six months of this year reflected the vision and open-mind of a leader of a major country.
Selecting Italy, Monaco and France as his first overseas destinations this year, the Chinese President has opened new space for the construction of the Belt & Road Initiative (BRI) and injected fresh impetus to China-Europe comprehensive strategic partnership.
In the following April and May, three major diplomatic events, including the Second Belt & Road Forum on International Cooperation, International Horticultural Exhibition 2019 Beijing, and Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilisations, were hosted in China, attracting nearly 50 heads of state, government chiefs & leaders of international organisations. These diplomatic events demonstrated the global appeal and influence of China’s visions and initiatives.
During the Second Belt & Road Forum on International Cooperation, Xi hosted a series of state events for visiting foreign leaders, and held over ten bilateral meetings. He has further consolidated the friendship and deepened cooperation between China and countries participating in the event.
This June, Xi made four consecutive visits, leaving his footprints on Russia, Central Asia, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), and Japan. These visits covered multiple bilateral and multilateral events, setting a new record in the history of China’s diplomacy since the founding of the People’s Republic of China, and demonstrating the foresight of the Chinese leader.
By endeavouring to promote integrated planning of its relations with major countries, neighbouring countries, developing countries, and its multilateral diplomacy, and continuously expanding its global partnership network, China has fully showcased its diplomatic wisdom.
These efforts were rewarding, just as Xi said at the welcoming banquet of the Second Belt & Road Forum for International Cooperation, “Frequent overseas trips may be exhausting, but we are repaid with a broader network of friends”.
The courage and persistence China has shown in its diplomatic efforts have yielded rich fruits.
During Xi’s state visit to Italy, China and Italy signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on jointly advancing the construction of the BRI, making Italy the first member of the Group of Seven to join the initiative.
Besides, China and France concluded agreements on the third round of the BRI-related demonstration projects in third-party markets and launched a third-party market fund during Xi’s state visit to France this March. The two countries have laid a solid foundation for BRI cooperation.
The Second Belt & Road Forum for International Cooperation, as a significant diplomatic event hosted by China in 2019, delivered 283 items of practical outcomes and reached cooperation agreements worth more than $64 billion, thus ushering in a new stage of the high-quality construction of the BRI.
During Xi’s state visit to Russia this June, which was his eighth to the country after being elected as Chinese President in 2013, he and his Russian counterpart jointly declared that the two countries would upgrade their relations to a comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination for a new era.
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and the DPRK, and Xi’s first state visit to the DPRK since he took office as Chinese president and General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee came just at this critical period of history.
During the visit, the two countries agreed that they would stay true to their original aspirations and join hands to create a bright future of inter-party and inter-state relations at a new starting point in history.
The fruitful achievements of China’s diplomacy signified the international community’s increasing approval and support for China.
It is widely agreed that instead of adopting the selfish philosophy of “me-first” policy and pursing a zero-sum game that result in the win of one party and the loss of the other, China integrates its own development into the development of the world and endeavours to seek universally beneficial and win-win results through its positive interaction with various countries.
It’s a general consensus that such efforts of China have constantly given impetus to the high-quality development of global economy and created conditions for the prosperity and stability of the world.
By offering the world with remarkable proposals, China has lived up to the responsibilities of a major country.
Attending the China-France Global Governance Forum, the 23rd St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, the three major diplomatic events hosted by China, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Bishkek, the fifth summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA), and the 14th Group of 20 (G20) Osaka summit, Xi has pointed direction for the world economy and global governance, as well as explored new paths for major country relations and international cooperation from the perspective of building a new type of international relations and a community with a shared future for mankind.
When faced with daunting challenges such as the deficit in governance, trust, peace, and development, as well as the rising unilateralism and protectionism, China is willing to jointly build the BRI with its global partners and uphold the principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits in global governance.
It will resolutely safeguard the legitimate right to development and international equality and justice, and join hands with various countries to pave a path of common development.
China, being open, inclusive and confident, will always promote world peace, contribute to global development, and safeguard the international order.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres spoke highly of China’s positive role in the world, saying that China firmly upholds multilateralism, and safeguards equity and justice, as well as the purposes and principles of the UN Charter when the world is faced with great uncertainties and the global legal systems and multilateralism are confronted with challenges.
China has played an important role in stabilising, and brought certainty, confidence and hope to the world, said Guterres.
As Xi said at the opening ceremony of the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilisations this May, “China today is more than the country itself; it is very much a part of Asia and the world.”
President Xi’s diplomatic tours, coming at the historical moment when China is about to celebrate the 70th anniversary of its founding, signalled to the world the original aspiration and commitment of the leader of a major country who promises to put aside his own well being for the good of his people, and also showcased the efforts made by China and its partners on its way to the centre of the world stage.