On September 28, 2021, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi co-chaired the 11th round of high-level strategic dialogue between China and the European Union (EU) with EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell Fontelles via video link.
Wang Yi said, both China and the EU believe that bilateral exchanges should be based on mutual respect, seeking common ground while shelving differences, expanding cooperation and reducing antagonism, upholding the international order based on the UN Charter and international law, and jointly addressing common challenges such as COVID-19 pandemic and climate change. The EU has said on many occasions that it welcomes China's development, has no intention of engaging in institutional confrontation and will not engage in any form of "new Cold War". China appreciates that. Recently, there have been more contacts and dialogues between China and the EU, and many consensuses have been reached, which will help enhance understanding, expand mutual trust and reduce misjudgments. We should consolidate this positive momentum, enhance political mutual trust, properly manage differences and contribute as two major forces to addressing global challenges.
Wang Yi said, both sides should make good preparations for the high-level exchanges in the next stage to inject new impetus into the development of bilateral relations, and step up coordination on a new round of high-level economic, trade and digital dialogues to deepen and deliver concrete results for the China-EU green and digital partnership. Both sides should align the Belt and Road Initiative and the EU's connectivity initiative to leverage our respective strengths and form synergy, deepen cooperation on vaccines, and continue to advance cooperation in such fields as science and technology innovation, finance, energy and agriculture.
Wang Yi said, during the General Debate of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly, President Xi Jinping put forward a series of important initiatives and measures on international cooperation against the pandemic, addressing climate change and promoting global development, injecting stability into the world at a time of turbulence and change. In particular, the Global Development Initiative proposes international cooperation in such fields as poverty reduction, food security, and fight against the pandemic, financing for development, climate change and green development, industrialization, and connectivity to prevail against the pandemic and accelerate the realization of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which has received positive response and support. We welcome the active participation of the EU.
Wang Yi said, President Xi Jinping also announced at this UN General Assembly that China will strongly support the green and low-carbon energy development of developing countries and will not build new coal-fired power projects abroad, which is another major measure China has taken independently to tackle global climate change and another positive contribution China has made to promoting global green recovery. China appreciates the EU's efforts to promote and strengthen global climate and environmental governance. China stands ready to continue to strengthen exchanges and dialogue with the EU to make addressing climate change an important pillar of China-EU cooperation.
Borrell said, the EU regards China as an important strategic partner and the bilateral relations are mature, multi-faceted and non-confrontational. Developing relations with China is an important agenda of the EU, and it is very important for the EU and China to maintain close and smooth communication. The EU is willing to work with China to prepare for the next stage of high-level exchanges between the two sides, and provide political guidance for the development of EU-China relations. The EU welcomes the Global Development Initiative proposed by President Xi Jinping, which will play an important role in global economic recovery and poverty eradication. The EU highly appreciates China's announcement of stopping building new coal-fired power projects abroad, which will help developing countries realize green and low-carbon development. The EU is ready to continue to strengthen cooperation with China on fighting COVID-19, climate change and biodiversity conservation.
The two sides exchanged views on human rights issues. Wang Yi said, in terms of human rights protection, there is no single best way, only the better one. China is ready to conduct dialogue and cooperation on human rights with other countries on the basis of equality and mutual respect. However, China will not accept "an instructor" on human rights, and oppose interference in other countries' internal affairs under the pretext of human rights. Borrell said that the EU will respect China's sovereignty and has no intention to lecture at China.
Wang Yi made clear China's principled position on Taiwan-related issues, stressing that the one-China principle is the general consensus of the international community and the political basis for the development of relations between China and the EU and its member states. "If the foundation is not firm, the ground is unsteady." Borrell said that the EU always adheres to the one-China policy, which is an important cornerstone of EU-China relations. The EU will not conduct official exchanges with Taiwan.
The two sides also exchanged in-depth views on Afghanistan, Myanmar, non-proliferation and other issues of common concern.