On Thursday, Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Joe Biden had their first phone conversation since the latter was inaugurated in the White House in late January, sending a series of positive signals to the global community.
First, this call is part of an exchange of Chinese Lunar New Year greetings between the two presidents.
The Spring Festival is very important for the Chinese. The telephone conversation between the two heads of state on the eve of the Chinese Lunar New Year marks a new starting point for direct communication, is a pledge of goodwill, and meets the expectations of the Chinese and Americans, as well as those of the wider world community.
Second, there is a common desire to maintain communication between the two parties. In their dialogue, the two leaders agreed to maintain close communication on Sino-US relations and matters of mutual interest.
Biden said Washington is ready to have a frank and constructive dialogue with China in a spirit of mutual respect, improve mutual understanding and avoid misunderstandings and miscalculations. These agreements are of positive importance for Beijing and Washington in order to dispel misunderstandings and engage in normal dialogue.
In recent years, relations between China and the United States have encountered their most serious difficulties since their establishment. Some Washington politicians, whose mentality remains stuck in the Cold War, saw China as a great threat to the United States. They implemented a series of policies that interfered in China’s internal affairs and harmed the interests of the Chinese people. They even tried to dissociate the two countries and advocate for a new Cold War.
With the inauguration of the Biden administration, the return of Sino-US relations on the right track has become a common aspiration of the international community.
When examining the relationship between the world’s two largest economies, one should avoid having your eyes riveted on the points of divergence between the two countries and rather look at the bigger picture.
It is quite normal that Beijing and Washington disagree on certain issues. Faced with these disagreements, both parties must respect each other, treat each other on an equal footing and deal with their differences constructively. One way to deal with these differences is to re-establish various dialogue mechanisms in order to understand precisely the other party’s policy intentions.
Third, there is a recognition of the spirit of cooperation. History and reality clearly show that China and the United States both win in cooperation and lose in confrontation: dialogue is always preferable to friction.
In the past four decades since the two countries established diplomatic ties, bilateral relations have been among the most deeply intertwined in the world, comprising broad areas of cooperation and broad areas of common interest.
Cooperation conforms to the fundamental interests of both sides and represents a popular trend that cannot be reversed.
On the world stage, cooperation between China and the United States can do a lot. The two countries fought together against terrorism, they faced the 2008 global financial crisis, fought the Ebola epidemic, and collaborated on the Paris climate agreement.
As the world experiences a transformation unprecedented in a century, made worse by the raging COVID-19 pandemic, China and the United States must shoulder their responsibilities as great countries to jointly address global challenges. They must maintain stability in the Asia-Pacific region and promote peace and development in the world.
Today, the world’s most important bilateral relations stand at a turning point, and the diplomacy of heads of state can play an irreplaceable guiding role.
In the future, the two countries should make joint efforts in the same direction, continue to collaborate without conflict or confrontation in a spirit of mutual respect and win-win cooperation, focus on cooperation, manage their differences well, and work together with healthy and stable development of Sino-US relations.