Pacific is venue of intl cooperation, not anyone’s backyard: Chinese Ambassador to Solomon Islands
Published: May 23, 2022 08:38 PM Updated: May 23, 2022 08:36 PM
China and Solomon Islands Photo: VCG
China and Solomon Islands Photo: VCG

Chinese Ambassador to the Solomon Islands Li Ming outlined the relationship between China and the Pacific Island countries in local news outlets in the Solomon Islands on Monday, highlighting China as a reliable friend of Pacific Island countries.

In an article with Li’s byline published in local leading daily newspapers including Island Sun and Solomon Star, Li introduced the China-proposed Global Development Initiative (GDI) and Global Security Initiative (GSI), which promote international cooperation to accelerate implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, emphasizing that the cooperation between China and the Solomon Islands as well as other Pacific Island countries create a model for developing countries to jointly pursue win-win cooperation.

As the largest developing country, China always stands with other developing countries with its commitment to equality of all countries and takes concrete actions to build a community with a shared future via the Belt and Road initiative (BRI) cooperation, Li said in the article.

China has provided aid support to Pacific Island countries in a wide range of areas for decades, including helping build over 100 infrastructure projects such as ports, roads, schools, hospitals, stadiums, as well as sponsoring over 1,300 students to study in China and offering more than 4,000 vocational and technical training opportunities, Li explained.

Since 2014, Chinese President Xi Jinping has met twice with the leaders of Pacific Island countries, and they agreed to establish comprehensive strategic partnerships featuring mutual respect and common development.

In October 2021, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Pacific Island countries’ foreign ministers agreed to establish a China-Pacific Island Countries reserve of emergency supplies, a poverty reduction and development cooperation center and a climate action cooperation center, which have already been put into use or will soon be completed.

China’s cooperation with Pacific Island countries based on respect, equality, mutual benefit, sincerity, results and good faith helps promote the prosperity of Pacific Island countries and the well-being of their peoples, and also sets up a model for developing countries to jointly pursue win-win cooperation.

Over the past two and a half years, since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Chinese central government and the Solomon Islands, China has made important contributions to both economic development and social stability in the country, which are two sides of the same coin that are closely connected to and supported by each other.

On September 2021, President Xi proposed the Global Development Initiative (GDI) at the UN General Assembly to galvanize worldwide attention to global development partnerships and promote international cooperation. Xi proposed on April 21 a Global Security Initiative (GSI) with a new concept of security that can replace confrontation and zero-sum mentality with dialogue, partnership and win-win results. The GDI and GSI are inspired by diplomatic tradition and wisdom with unique Chinese characteristics.

In terms of relations with Pacific Island countries, Li said China has no selfish interests and does not seek “spheres of influence,” nor does it use bullying and coercion. As two sovereign and independent countries, China and Solomon Islands are committed to normal law enforcement and security cooperation on the basis of equality, respect and mutual benefit.

The Security Agreement will further strengthen bilateral cooperation between China and the Solomon Islands in areas such as disaster response, humanitarian aid, development assistance and maintaining social order, in order to jointly address traditional and non-traditional security challenges faced by the Solomon Islands for decades.

The Pacific is the shared home of all countries in the region, not anyone’s “backyard,” and it can become a venue of international cooperation, not geopolitical competition, Li said in the article.

Global Times