Update: China, US reach five points of consensuses following Wang-Blinken meeting
Published: Apr 26, 2024 09:10 AM Updated: Apr 26, 2024 10:51 PM


Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with visiting US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday in Beijing. Wang pointed out that although positive interactions in the bilateral relations have been increasing, negative factors in China-US relations continue to build up as China's core interests are challenged, warning that the US should not cross China's red lines on issues related to its sovereignty, security and development interests.  

China and the US reached five points of consensuses on Friday following the Wang-Blinken meeting. 

Both agreed to continue following the guidance of the heads of state of both countries, striving to stabilize and develop China-US relations. The parties affirm the positive progress made in dialogue and cooperation in various fields between China and the US since the meeting in San Francisco, agreeing to accelerate the implementation of important consensuses reached by the heads of state in San Francisco. 

Second, both parties agreed to maintain high-level exchanges and contacts at all levels. They will continue to leverage the restored and newly established consultation mechanisms in diplomatic, economic, financial, and business sectors. They will continue military exchanges and further advance cooperation between China and the US in drug prohibition, climate change, and artificial intelligence. 

Third, both parties announce that they will hold the first intergovernmental dialogue on artificial intelligence between China and the US, continue to advance consultations on guiding principles of China-US relations, conduct a new round of consultations on Asia-Pacific affairs and maritime affairs between China and the US, and continue China-US consular consultations. The China-US drug prohibition working group will hold a high-level meeting. The US welcomes Chinese Special Envoy for Climate Change Affairs Liu Zhenmin's visit to the country. 

Fourth, both sides will take measures to expand cultural exchanges between the two countries, welcome students from each other's countries, and successfully hold the 14th China-US Tourism High-level Dialogue in Xi'an, Northwest China's Shaanxi Province, in May. 

Fifth, both parties will continue consultations on international and regional issues of concern, with special envoys from both sides strengthening communication.

Some Chinese experts welcomed the positive comments made by both sides on emphasizing cooperation, effectively managing differences and focusing on the importance of stabilizing bilateral relations, who also hailed the meeting as effective and constructive.

Last November, Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden met in San Francisco, jointly outlining the San Francisco Vision. Under the leadership of the two heads of state, China-US relations have generally stabilized, Wang said. 

In the current complex international situation, what are the next steps for China-US relations? A fundamental question needs answering: should China and the US be partners or adversaries? This is the first step toward the stable development of the relationship, Wang told Blinken. 

If the US always regards China as its main adversary, China-US relations will only face continuous troubles and problems, Wang said. 

Dialogue, cooperation, and positive interactions in various fields have increased, which has been welcomed by both peoples and the international community. However, on the other hand, negative factors in China-US relations continue to rise and accumulate, facing various disruptions and sabotage, with China's legitimate rights to development being unreasonably suppressed and China's core interests continually challenged, the top Chinese diplomat said. 

Wang emphasized that whether China-US relations will adhere to the correct path of stability and progress or repeat the cycle of spiraling downward is a significant issue facing both nations, testing their sincerity and capabilities. 

It remains to be seen whether both sides will lead in international cooperation to address global issues for mutual and multilateral gains, or oppose and confront each other, even to the point of conflict, leading to losses for all, he noted. 

On the Taiwan question, Wang emphasized that it is the first and foremost red line in China-US relations. China demands that the US adhere strictly to the one-China principle and the three US-China joint communiques, not send the wrong signals to "Taiwan independence" separatist forces in any way. 

The US side should fulfill President Biden's commitments of not  supporting "Taiwan independence," not supportinga two Chinas or "one China, one Taiwan," not using it as a tool to contain China, and stop arming Taiwan island, and  support China's peaceful reunification, Wang said. 

The US has implemented numerous measures to suppress China's economic and technological advancement, which is not fair competition but containment and encirclement, not risk reduction but risk creation, Wang told Blinken. 

The Chinese diplomat said the US should act on its statements of not seeking to contain China's economic development, not seeking to decouple from China, and having no intention of hindering Chinese technological progress, stop promoting the false narrative of China's overcapacity, lift illegal sanctions on Chinese companies, and cease imposing tariffs that violate WTO rules.

Wang also stressed that China's attitude has been consistent, viewing and developing China-US relations from the perspective of building a community with a shared future for mankind, being responsible to the people, the world, and the future. 

China's stance has been consistent, always adhering to the principles of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence, and win-win cooperation proposed by President Xi, committed to promoting a stable, healthy and sustainable development of China-US relations, he continued. 

China's demands have been consistent, always advocating for respect for each other's core interests. The US should not interfere in China's internal affairs, suppress China's development, or infringe upon China's sovereignty, security, and development interests, Wang said. 

From the Chinese side, Wang further clarified that the constructive outcomes and a positive future for US-China relations hinge on respecting China's core interests. China's respect for US interests and legitimate rights has always been consistent, but US policy toward China has been characterized by a discrepancy between positive rhetoric and problematic actions, Li Haidong, a professor from the China Foreign Affairs University, told the Global Times on Friday.

"Hence,Wang made it clear in his discussions with Blinken that the US must fully understand China's position on core issues such as the Taiwan question and the rights to China's development," Li said. 

During the meeting, Wang stressed that the Asia-Pacific region should not become a battlefield for major powers. He hopes the US will make the right choice, move toward China, achieve benign interactions in the Asia-Pacific, abandon exclusionary practices, refrain from coercing regional countries to take sides, stop deploying land-based intermediate-range missiles, and cease undermining China's strategic security interests and the hard-won peace and stability of the region.

Blinken said during the meeting that the US-China relationship is one of the most important bilateral relationships in the world, and responsibly managing it is a common responsibility of both nations. The US continues to follow a one-China policy, does not support "Taiwan independence," seeks no change in China's system, has no intention of conflict with China, seeks no "decoupling" from China, and does not seek to contain China's development. A successfully developed China is good for the world, according to a readout released by the Chinese Foreign Ministry. 

The US senior diplomat is willing to move forward based on the consensus reached by the leaders of the two countries in San Francisco, enhance dialogue and communication, effectively manage differences, avoid misunderstandings and misjudgments, and promote stable development of US-China relations.

The two sides also exchanged views on issues such as the Ukraine conflict, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the situations in North Korea and Myanmar.

Both sides agreed that the talks were candid, substantive, and constructive, and agreed to continue following the guidance of their leaders to stabilize and develop US-China relations. 

They affirmed the positive progress in dialogue and cooperation in various fields since the San Francisco meeting, agreed to accelerate the implementation of the important consensus reached by the leaders in San Francisco, maintain high-level and various levels of contacts, continue military exchanges and consultations in various fields, further advance US-China cooperation on banning chemical weapons and artificial intelligence, and take measures to expand cultural and people-to-people exchanges between the two countries. 

"To some extent, this dialogue was a reassurance process, ensuring that both sides mutually align better in handling different issues, guaranteeing an effective relationship with more cooperation and a more positive direction," Li said. 

As the US has often made issued verbal assurances in the past but has had many issues in action, this exchange helps the US overcome unfavorable factors and benefit from positive elements, building on a foundation of accumulated consensus and mutual interests to ensure a stable and long-lasting relationship, the expert noted. 

It is also evident that both sides have high expectations for a stable, controllable, and constructive China-US relations and the aim of the exchanges was to ensure these expectations are met with actions, as a stable and cooperative bilateral relationship, based on respect for each other's development rights and core interests, nurtures a relationship that serves the common interests and demands of both sides, experts said.