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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Zhao Lijian’s Regular Press Conference on November 2, 2022

2022-11-02 19:53

People’s Daily: On November 1, the 31st session of the Arab League (AL) summit kicked off in Algeria. President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, the rotating president of the Council of the AL, on the convening of the 31st AL summit. Could you share more details on that?

Zhao Lijian: The 31st Arab League summit kicked off in the Algerian capital of Algiers on November 1. President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to Algerian President Tebboune, who is also the rotating president of the Council of the Arab League (AL), to express warm congratulations on the convening of the meeting. He applauded the AL’s effort in upholding multilateralism and defending the common interests of developing countries and spoke highly of China’s friendly ties with Arab countries. He also noted that the two sides have consolidated political mutual trust, achieved sustained and tangible progress in Belt and Road cooperation and witnessed fruitful practical cooperation in various fields. In the face of COVID-19, China and Arab countries have stood together and offered each other support, setting a good example of South-South cooperation. China stands ready to work with Arab countries to continue to offer staunch support to each other and expand cooperation, jointly forge a China-Arab community with a shared future in the new era, create a better future for China-Arab relations and contribute to world peace and development. Zhai Jun, Special Envoy of the Chinese Government for the Middle East, attended the opening ceremony and passed on President Xi Jinping’s congratulatory letter to the meeting.

China-Arab relations are time-tested and have grown from strength to strength. China and Arab countries are future-oriented strategic partners of all-round cooperation and common development. We have offered each other consistent and firm support on issues concerning core interests and of major concerns. Our joint response in the face of changes and a pandemic unseen in a century has made China-Arab relations brighter and even more resilient, providing a benchmark for solidarity and coordination between developing countries. Under the new circumstances, China will enhance solidarity and coordination with Arab countries to jointly build a China-Arab community with a shared future in the new era and continue to deepen our strategic partnership.  

YTN: The DPRK launched missiles today. Unlike before, it fired missiles to the south, which fell into areas close to the ROK’s territorial waters. Tensions on the Korean Peninsula have heightened recently. How does China view the Peninsula issue? 

Zhao Lijian: China is closely following the developments of the Korean Peninsula situation. It is in the common interest of this region to maintain peace and stability of the Peninsula and address each other’s concerns in a balanced way through dialogue and consultation. We hope relevant parties can keep to the direction of seeking political settlement, meet each other halfway, and avoid a spiral of escalation.

Beijing Daily: According to reports, Tanzanian Ambassador to China Mbelwa Kairuki gave a warm review of Tanzania-China cooperation and gave a preview of the possible outcomes of President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s visit to China at a press conference recently. He said, the two sides will sign multiple agreements during the president’s stay in China, which will bring new opportunities to bilateral cooperation in infrastructure, agriculture, trade and investment. The two countries enjoy close relations and share mutual benefits. This visit demonstrates the high-level political mutual trust between the two countries and will elevate the relations to a new stage. What’s China’s comment? 

Zhao Lijian: I have also noted relevant reports. Ambassador Mbelwa Kairuki also shared the tangible benefits China-Tanzania cooperation has brought to the Tanzanian people in such areas as socioeconomic development, trade, employment, health care and people-to-people exchanges. Just as Ambassador Mbelwa Kairuki said, the upcoming visit by President Hassan will fully demonstrate the high-level friendship and mutual trust between China and Tanzania. We believe this visit will promote the development of the relations at an even higher level.

President Hassan is the first African head of state China will receive after the 20th National Congress of the CPC. China-Tanzania friendship is an epitome of China-Africa friendship and cooperation. China-Africa relations have been strong, and the two sides have ushered in a new era of building a high-level China-Africa community with a shared future. China is working closely with African countries to carry forward the spirit of China-Africa friendship and cooperation under the new circumstances, and jointly implement the outcomes of the FOCAC Dakar Conference. We believe that President Hassan’s visit will further bolster the building of a China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era.

AFP: The Dutch government said yesterday that no permission was sought from the Netherlands for the Chinese “police service stations”, and it ordered China to close the “police service stations” in the Netherlands. What is China's comment?

Zhao Lijian: I would refer you to competent authorities for more detailed information. Let me say that according to our understanding, the sites you mentioned are not “police stations” or “police service centers”. They assist overseas Chinese nationals who need help in accessing the online service platform to get their driving licenses renewed and receive physical check-ups for that purpose. The venues are provided by local overseas Chinese communities who would like to be helpful, and the people who work on those sites are all volunteers who come from these communities. They are not police personnel from China. There is no need to make people nervous about this.

Dragon TV: The fifth China International Import Expo (CIIE) will kick off on Saturday, with the preparations almost completed. Do you have any comment? What are your expectations for this CIIE?

Zhao Lijian: The fifth China International Import Expo (CIIE) will be held in Shanghai from November 5 to 10. It is the first major international expo to be held by China after the 20th CPC National Congress. As an official from the CIIE Bureau noted at a press conference yesterday, the fifth CIIE will see more participating countries, more diverse exhibits, more premium products and various activities that people can look forward to. 

The report to the 20th CPC National Congress says explicitly that China is committed to its fundamental national policy of opening to the outside world and pursues a mutually beneficial strategy of opening-up, and that China strives to create new opportunities for the world with its own development and to contribute its share to building an open global economy. The success of the CIIE has been and will continue to be a good example of China’s resolve and confidence to open up its market to the world and share development opportunities with other countries. We wish the fifth CIIE full success. We are convinced that it will be a highlight in global economic recovery and growth for this year.  

CGTN: Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif of Pakistan has started his official visit to China. Can you share more about his visit?

Zhao Lijian: On the morning of 2 November, President Xi Jinping met with Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif of Pakistan on his official visit to China at the Great Hall of the People.

President Xi welcomed Prime Minister Sharif and thanked him for his congratulatory letter right after the opening of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC). President Xi noted that China and Pakistan are good friends, good partners and good brothers. Amid global changes and uncertainties in recent years, the two countries have supported each other and forged ahead, demonstrating an iron-clad friendship. China views its relations with Pakistan from a strategic and long-term perspective, and Pakistan has always been a high priority in China’s neighborhood diplomacy. China is ready to work with Pakistan to elevate the level of all-round strategic cooperation, speed up efforts to build a closer China-Pakistan community with a shared future in the new era, and inject new impetus into their all-weather strategic cooperative partnership.

President Xi stressed that China commends Pakistan’s firm commitment to advancing friendship and cooperation with China, and expressed appreciation for Pakistan’s support on issues vital to China’s core and major concerns. China will continue to firmly support Pakistan in safeguarding its sovereignty, territorial integrity, development interests and dignity, and in achieving unity, stability, development and prosperity. China expressed deep sympathies to the Pakistani people over the devastating floods that have hit the country, and will provide additional emergency relief to help with post-flood reconstruction. China supports Pakistan’s efforts to revive agricultural production, and will strengthen cooperation with Pakistan on disaster prevention and relief and climate change. 

After presenting the key outcomes of the 20th CPC National Congress, President Xi underscored that China will continue its fundamental policy of opening-up and provide new opportunities to Pakistan and the rest of the world through continuous development. China will further deepen synergy between its development strategies and those of Pakistan. The two sides will make full use of the Joint Cooperation Committee of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), advance CPEC with greater efficiency, and make CPEC an exemplar of high-quality Belt and Road cooperation. It is important to accelerate the construction of auxiliary infrastructure for Gwadar Port to unleash its role in driving interconnected development in the region. The two sides will work together to create conditions for the early implementation of the upgradation of ML-1 and the Karachi Circular Railway project. Pakistan is welcome to export more quality agri-products to China. China will work with Pakistan to expand cooperation in digital economy, e-commerce, photovoltaic and other new-energy technologies, and take solid steps to advance cooperation concerning agriculture, science, technology and people’s livelihood. China will continue to do its best to support Pakistan in stabilizing its financial situation. China supports its provinces with a strong industry in pairing up with Pakistani partners to advance industrial cooperation, and hopes the Pakistani side will provide a sound business environment. President Xi said the safety of Chinese nationals in Pakistan is close to his heart, and conveyed his hope that Pakistan will provide a reliable and safe environment for Chinese institutions and personnel working on cooperation projects there.

President Xi pointed out that the world, our times and history are changing in ways like never before. Facing a highly uncertain world, both sides should stand on the right side of history, keep up their strong cooperation in multilateral mechanisms, and work closely on major international and regional issues so as to uphold true multilateralism, international fairness and justice and the shared interests of developing countries, and inject certainty and positives into the world. China will work with Pakistan to advance the operationalization of the Global Development Initiative and the Global Security Initiative, make the global economic governance system more fair, equitable, inclusive and beneficial to all, and build a community with a shared future for mankind. These collaborative efforts will provide a strong underpinning for the development of the two countries, and contribute more to global peace, stability and prosperity. 

Prime Minister Sharif noted that it is a great honor for him to be among the first foreign leaders to visit China after the successful 20th CPC National Congress, which marked a new milestone. The visit is a testament to the profound, iron-clad friendship between Pakistan and China. On behalf of the Pakistani government and people, Prime Minister Sharif once again expressed hearty congratulations to President Xi on his re-election as General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee. He said that over the past decade, under the dynamic leadership of President Xi, China has created a miracle of great development achievements. China has upheld multilateralism, promoted global solidarity and cooperation, and made important contributions to safeguarding world peace and development. In doing so, China has lived up to its responsibility as a major country. The world cannot operate without China, and China’s development cannot be isolated or contained by any force. Prime Minister Sharif expressed his confidence that President Xi, with his extraordinary vision, will continue to lead China toward even more remarkable achievements and create an even brighter future for the world. 

Prime Minister Sharif stressed that deepening Pakistan’s all-weather strategic cooperative partnership with China is a cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy and the national consensus of Pakistan. He expressed heartfelt appreciation to the Chinese government and people for the valuable anti-COVID support, and for the generous assistance in the wake of the devastating floods. No country has ever helped Pakistan or other developing countries with such wholehearted sincerity, he said. He reiterated Pakistan’s firm commitment to the one-China policy and its firm support for China’s position on issues concerning China’s core interests including Taiwan, Xinjiang and Hong Kong. Even as Pakistan learns from China’s successful experience and tries to rely on its own efforts, Pakistan will deepen all-round cooperation with China to better develop itself. This is the only way forward for Pakistan. CPEC has had a profound impact on Pakistan’s economic and social development. Pakistan is ready to work with China to continue promoting high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, and hopes to have China’s strong support in the upgradation of ML-1, the Karachi Circular Railway and other important infrastructure projects. Pakistan will further step up security measures and do all it can to protect the safety of Chinese institutions and personnel. Pakistan fully supports the Global Development Initiative and the Global Security Initiative put forth by President Xi. It will strengthen communication and collaboration with China in international and regional affairs to make a positive contribution to world peace and development. The Pakistan-China friendship is unbreakable. Pakistan will always stand firmly with China.

After the meeting, President Xi held a welcoming banquet for Prime Minister Sharif at the Golden Hall of the Great Hall of the People. 

Wang Yi, member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, State Councilor and Foreign Minister, and He Lifeng, member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission, were present at the events.

Prime Minister Sharif will also meet with other Chinese leaders later today. We will release updates in due course. 

Phoenix TV: According to reports, the US government has asked countries like Japan to adopt restrictive measures on semiconductor exports to China. Japanese officials familiarwith the matter said that after receiving the US proposal, the Japanese government has started relevant coordination, including discussions on the restrictive measures it could take as the US has done. What’s China’s comment?

Zhao Lijian: For some time, the US has been abusing export control measures to deliberately block and hobble Chinese companies. The US has coerced its allies to join in suppressing China’s economic development. This can only cause huge damage to the stability of global industrial and supply chains, seriously violate free trade rules and gravely undermine the economic development of countries and the well-being of their people. We will continue to work with the international community to oppose the US’s economic coercion and bullying practices to jointly keep the world economic system, rules and foundation stable. We also hope other countries will independently make the right decisions on the basis of their own long-term interests and the fundamental interests of the international community.

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