China-US intercultural dialogue helpful for strengthening bilateral relations: experts

Source:Xinhua Published: 2013-10-5 14:52:45

An intercultural dialogue between China and the United States is helpful for strengthening bilateral relations and building a new type of relationship, Chinese and US experts said in Washington Friday.

"This could be the first time a non-government organization from China has ever undertaken on its own initiative an intercultural dialogue in Washington," said Patrick Ho Chi-ping, Deputy Chairman and Secretary General of the China Energy Fund Committee, a Hong Kong-based think tank.

Ho made the remarks at a China-US colloquium with the theme of Core Values and World Order.

The intercultural dialogue, organized by the China Energy Fund Committee, represents a new paradigm of civil diplomacy between China and the US, aiming to enhance understanding of each other's core values and cultural traditions, as well as historical background and helping to build a new type of major country relationship, he explained.

Political mutual trust could only be possible when misinterpretations, miscalculations and misjudgments stemming from suspicion, assumption and real intentions are eliminated, added Ho, the former Secretary for Home Affairs of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government.

Citing China's 5000-year history of huge expansions of power, Ho said he believed China's rise could be peaceful, as it has been before, and dismissed concerns that it would pose a threat to other countries when it rises to the status of a great power.

"I don't think China threatens other countries. China doesn't have a history of aggression towards other countries." Robert Fuller, former president of Oberlin College in Ohio, shares the same view.

"I think China and America are the two most important countries in the world, and if they work together, they might be able to do something that they couldn't do separately," said Fuller.

"We're trying to figure out what the common global values are and how to work together with common interests," said Joshua Mitchell, professor of Political Theory at Georgetown University, and echoed Fuller's view.

Ho hoped such colloquium could help build a long-term dialogue mechanism through non-government channels to address some of the acute problems currently confronting the two countries and strengthen bilateral relations.

The China Energy Fund Committee is a nonprofit, non-governmental think tank devoted to public diplomacy and research on strategic issues, with emphasis on energy and culture.

Posted in: Diplomacy

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