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China, EU should uphold multilateralism in face of unilateralism, power politics

Updated: Dec 16,2019 09:09 AM    Xinhua

MADRID — China and the European Union (EU) should firmly uphold multilateralism and give the world more stability, as unilateralism and power politics are going on the rampage, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Dec 15.

He made the remarks when meeting with the EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell on the sidelines of the 14th Foreign Ministers' Meeting of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM).

As comprehensive strategic partners and important powers in the process of multi-polarization, China and the EU shoulder important responsibilities for world peace and development, Wang said.

Facing the complicated and volatile international situation, China and the EU should enhance strategic coordination and bring more positive energy to the world, said the top Chinese diplomat.

Noting that the World Trade Organization (WTO) is now challenged by protectionism, he said China and Europe should uphold free trade, safeguard the multilateral trading system, and bring more openness to the world.

China and Europe are partners rather than rivals as there is much more consensus than divergence, and more cooperation than competition, Wang stressed.

He added that China's development is not a challenge but an opportunity for the EU, and vice versa.

It is not surprising that China and the EU have differences on some issues as they have different histories, cultures, and social systems, Wang noted, stressing that the two sides should address the differences through frank dialogues based on mutual respect.

Wang said China is ready to work with the EU to prepare for a series of high-level exchanges next year, which marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the EU.

He added that China is willing to elevate the China-EU comprehensive strategic partnership to a new level.

For his part, Borrell said that China's achievements in the past 40 years of reform and opening up are a miracle in human history and that China's development and growth momentum in the next 40 years is irreversible.

Borrell said China has a vital role in international affairs and it's impossible to solve major global and regional issues such as climate change and the Iranian nuclear issue without China's participation.

Facing the current international situation, the EU hopes to set ambitious goals with China, develop mutually beneficial and win-win relationships, and to promote strategic cooperation in both bilateral and international dimension, he said.

Echoing the Chinese foreign minister, Borrell said the two sides should consider and deal with the differences between the two sides from a higher perspective, and jointly build a more peaceful and prosperous world.

Next year is crucial for EU-China relations, he said, adding that the EU is also ready to work with China to prepare for a series of high-level exchanges.