Wang Yi to attend FMs’ meeting with Central Asian nations, jointly tackle security challenge
Published: Jun 06, 2022 09:39 PM
State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi

State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi is scheduled to attend the third "China+Central Asia" (C+C5) Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Kazakhstan and pay an official visit to the country from June 6 to 9.

Zhao Lijian, spokesperson of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, made the announcement on Monday, noting that Wang was invited by Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tileuberdi.

Chinese analysts said that the C+C5 foreign ministers' meeting is scheduled to take place as China and regional countries' relations ushered in a new era, following the virtual summit between state leaders commemorating the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Central Asian countries in January.

This meeting is regular, which will inherit traditional friendship between China and Central Asia and is expected to boost bilateral and multilateral cooperation on energy, trade, regional security, food security and various other fields against the backdrop of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, Zhu Yongbiao, director of the Center for Afghanistan Studies in Lanzhou University, told the Global Times on Monday.

The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has a great impact on the whole of Central Asia, resulting in problems like devaluation of the currency, unemployment, increasing food prices and shortage of food supply, Zhu said.

While continuing to advance high-quality Belt and Road Initiative, China and the five Central Asian countries can further implement a batch of model projects in economic and trade, energy, transportation, and investment to ease the current difficulties in the region, said Zhu, predicting that such cooperation is likely to be covered during the third C+C5 Foreign Ministers' Meeting.

As the 2022 annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Summit (SCO) Heads of State Council will be held on September 15-16 in Uzbekistan, cooperation under the SCO framework could also be covered during C+C5, which is expected to expand energy cooperation and stabilize international energy market prices and supply, Zhu predicted.

In order to jointly contribute to regional security and stability, Afghan issue could continue to be a regular focus during the meeting, Zhu believes.

China and the Central Asian countries are expected to further promote their support for Afghanistan's peaceful reconstruction, and stand ready to play a due role for the stability and development of Afghanistan, the observer said.

Also, given that Kazakhstan has been subjected to externally stoked "terrorist attacks" in early 2022, which have caused great losses and stirred social turmoil unseen in decades in the Central Asian country, Wang Yi has stated on January 11 over phone with Tileuberdi that China is willing to strengthen cooperation with Kazakhstan in law enforcement and security sectors, and increase bilateral cooperation in anti-interference so as to maintain the security of political systems of both countries. Wang said China will work together with Kazakhstan to prevent and oppose any attempts of "color revolutions," and jointly oppose any interference and infiltration by external forces.

This issue could be another topic during Wang's ongoing visit in Kazakhstan and more cooperation to counter external interference is expected to be pushed forward, Zhu predicted.

Chinese analysts believe the C+C5 foreign ministers' meeting is expected to address the region's most acute challenges of an economic downturn and the threat of a "color revolution" following the Russia-Ukraine conflict, and also smashed the US' recent malicious attempt to pressure Central Asia with ideological tools in order to drive a wedge between China and the region.