China doing all it can in global affairs

08:44, March 01, 2010      

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BEIJING: China will use its full repertoire of diplomatic skills to deal with international affairs, but there may be issues beyond its influence, Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi has said amid growing global expectations of China exerting a greater role in world affairs.

As the annual session of the National People's Congress (NPC) - China's top legislature - convenes this week, foreign policy remains in the spotlight over a series of thorny affairs.

China's stand on the Iran nuclear program, its efforts to help rekindle the stalled Six-Party Talks on resolving the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, and how it handles challenges such as climate change are on the list of contentious issues.

In an interview with China Daily before the NPC session, Yang said China "will never shirk from international roles that are within our capacity, and will continue to meet our global obligations. At the same time, China, as a developing country, will make more contributions within its capacity to world peace and development."

"We won't do things that go beyond our strength and current level of development."

Yang made the remarks in the context of China's rising role in world affairs, which has generated both expectations of the country playing a bigger role and uneasiness about its development.

According to Yang, the rising global role has given China unprecedented opportunities in its diplomacy.

"We have a more solid basis to strengthen cooperation with other countries, more methods at our disposal to safeguard the favorable external environment, more diversified ways to promote the interests of developing countries in the international arena, and more enabling conditions for making the international order more equitable and reasonable."

However, as other countries seek more cooperation with China on major world affairs, they hold higher expectations, Yang said.

"There are those who really want China to play a bigger role; and those who overestimate China's strength, exaggerate and play up China's capacity to influence world affairs."

He called for an objective and rational examination of the spectrum of discussion on China.

During the past several years, China's success in holding the Olympics, handling the global financial crisis and combating climate change has thrust the country into the global limelight and made it the focus of world attention, according to Yang.

We need to look at those comments on China's international role in an objective and rational way, and with the full understanding that China will for long remain a developing country, Yang said.

"We need to discuss in a matter-of-fact manner the achievements we've made, the international influence we enjoy and the challenges confronting us in foreign affairs."

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