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Posted at: Nov 16, 2017, 12:39 AM; last updated: Nov 16, 2017, 12:39 AM (IST)

A Chinese view of the new global order

As a saying goes, if you want to create an opponent, you will have an opponent. The cold war mentality must give way to closer Indo-Pacific ties.

Luo Zhaohui
Chinese Ambassador to India

The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) has successfully concluded in Beijing, but the heated discussion and interpretation of it continue both in China and abroad. People show strong interests in its far-reaching influence on China and the world, as well as China-India relations.

I believe that the influence is positive and I would like to highlight my optimism in the following three aspects.

First, I am optimistic about China's development and its future. One important political judgment in the 19th CPC National Congress is that Socialism with Chinese Characteristics has crossed the threshold into a new era. China is the second largest economy in the world. Over the past five years, China has made historical progress and deepened its reform and opening-up. With an average annual economic growth of 7.2 per cent, China's average contribution to the global economic growth exceeds 30 percent annually. More than 60 million people have been lifted out of poverty. People are talking about high-speed train, Alipay, bicycle-sharing and online shopping with great interest. In the early stage of China's reform and opening-up, we formulated a "three-step" roadmap of development. The first step is to address the subsistence problem, followed by preliminarily building a moderately prosperous society as the second step. These two goals have been successfully accomplished in advance. At present, we are in the decisive stage of the third step for building a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020 when the CPC celebrates its centenary anniversary.

In the meantime, the principal contradiction in Chinese society has changed. This is another important political judgment made in the 19th CPC National Congress. It has evolved from the contradiction between the ever-growing material and cultural needs of the people and the backwardness of social production, to the one between unbalanced and inadequate development and the people's ever-growing needs for a better life. It indicates that we need to focus on addressing development's imbalances and inadequacies, and shift the economy from high speed growth to improvement in quality and effect of development. With this, we will be better placed to focus on green development and environmental protection, and to promote well-rounded human development and all-round social progress. 

The great practice of China's reform and opening-up and the great era we are in call for the great theories and ideas emerged in the Congress. The 19th CPC National Congress has endorsed the Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era as the guiding ideology that the CPC adheres to on a long-term basis. 

The Thought will guide China to realise its blueprint. The Party Congress has drawn up a two-step approach to develop China into a great modern socialist country by 2050 when China celebrates its centenary anniversary, building on the foundation created by the moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020. At the first stage from 2020 to 2035, socialist modernization will be basically realised. At the second stage from 2035 to 2050, we will build China a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious, and beautiful.

Second, I am optimistic about China's interaction with the rest of the world. China has been deeply integrated into the world and long adhered to the fundamental national policy of opening up. President Xi Jinping attaches great importance to and directly participates in China's external exchanges. Over the past five years, President Xi has made 28 foreign trips to 56 countries. China has hosted APEC, G20, BRICS Summit and the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. Earlier this year, President Xi's speech on globalization and free trade at the World Economic Forum in Davos was very inspiring. He is the super diplomat of China and the great contributor to world peace and development.

The Xi Jinping Thought on major country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics is highly innovative and consistent. One of the important concepts is to forge a new form of international relations featuring mutual respect, fairness, justice, and win-win cooperation. The other one is to build a community with a shared future for mankind, to build an open, inclusive, clean, and beautiful world that enjoys lasting peace, universal security, and common prosperity. In line with the world trend, President Xi's thought on diplomacy follows the tide of the times and will further strengthen China's interaction with the rest of the world.

A prosperous and stable China in itself is a contribution to world peace and development and will provide more opportunities for world prosperity, progress, and mutually beneficial cooperation. In the coming 15 years, China's market will further expand. It is projected that China will import $24 trillion worth of goods and attract $2 trillion of foreign direct investment. China's total outbound investment will reach $2 trillion. Next November, Shanghai will host the first China International Import Expo.

To realise the blueprint and achieve greater progress, China needs a stable international and regional environment and order. In this context, China must stay committed to its independent foreign policy of peace, upholding the Five Principles of Peaceful Co-existence, and promoting good neighborliness and friendship. China is opposed to zero-sum game and never seeks hegemony.

After the 19th CPC National Congress, China's diplomacy has already taken on a new look. Russian and the US leaders visited China successively. President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang will attend several multilateral meetings respectively and visit some neighbouring countries. China-ROK and China-Japan relations have also made progress.

Third, I am optimistic about the prospect of China-India relations. The new thought and blueprint have emerged in the 19th National Congress. President Xi and Prime Minister Modi reached important consensus during their meeting in September in Xiamen. Against the aforesaid backdrop, I am optimistic about China-India relations. Both China and India are developing countries and face common tasks of developing economy and improving people's well-being. At a critical stage of deepening reform and advancing modernisation, both countries need to foster a favourable external environment. China and India are neighbours that cannot be moved away. We live under the same sky. As important members of BRICS and the SCO, China and India are committed to advancing globalisation and multi-polarity, and upholding democracy in international relations. We believe that the New India initiative proposed by Prime Minister Modi and the Chinese Dream are closely connected and can be synergised as well.

In recent days, some media have been covering the concept of "Indo-Pacific Strategy" and speculating that the emerging multilateral cooperation is against China. I have a different opinion. As a saying goes, if you want to create an opponent, you will have an opponent. We should get rid of the cold war mentality. In fact, it is in the interests of all parties and in the trend of globalisation to enhance closer Indo-Pacific ties from a geographical and economic perspective. Above all, China cannot be contained. We are fully confident about it.

China attaches great importance to China-India relations. There will be a series of institutional dialogues between the two countries. We need to set long-term goals for our relations such as Free Trade Agreement, the Treaty of Good Neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation between China and India, "early harvest" on the boundary issue and alignment of the Belt and Road Initiative with India's development strategies. I firmly believe that China and India can move at the same pace towards the same direction. We need to enhance mutual trust and focus on cooperation, while properly managing differences, in a bid to promote China-India relations to a new level.


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