China, US launch new win-win cooperation platform

13:09, June 24, 2011      

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The first round of consultations between China and the United States on Asia-Pacific affairs will be held in Hawaii on June 25. Compared to the existing 60-plus consultation mechanisms between the two countries, the Asia-Pacific affairs consultation mechanism appears a little "late." However, it was actually launched at the right time, given the development of China-U.S. relations and the current situation in the region.

China and the United States are two world powers facing each other across the Pacific Ocean. They have conducted fruitful cooperation in handling Asia-Pacific affairs and made great contributions to regional peace, stability, and prosperity. During Chinese President Hu Jintao's state visit to the United States this past January, the heads of state of the two countries vowed to follow the trend of the times, and to work together toward a cooperative partnership based on mutual respect and mutual benefit, ensuring that the two countries' cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region will move in the right direction.

The United States has long dominated the political, economic, and security landscape of the Asia-Pacific region, while China, as an emerging great power in the region, is bound to play a major role in transforming the landscape. The interests of the two countries in the region overlap to some extent, which has caused friction.

The two countries are both located in the Asia-Pacific region, so it is understandable that they have overlapping interests. Proper handling of their overlapping interests will create a significant and positive impact on the regional peace, development and prosperity.

The Asia-Pacific region is currently searching for a deep economic integration and is in a period of transforming to a new security pattern. The China-U.S. consultation is the inevitable product of this transitory stage. There are many hot issues in the Asia-Pacific region and regional diversity and complexity is very prominent. China and the United States have common interests and common responsibility in the Asia-Pacific region. This has decided that the two countries can only work together in this region.

The China-U.S. consultation on Asia-Pacific affairs is not aimed at "setting the tone" or "setting the direction" for various Asia-Pacific affairs, but rather planning and promoting bilateral cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region through the exchange of views to properly handle related conflicts and differences and form an interaction pattern with rules. China and the United States strengthening mutual trust is the reliable guarantee of the stable development of the Asia-Pacific region.

China will strengthen contact with Asia-Pacific countries in various fields along with its rapid economic development and growing strength in order to expand its influence in the Asia-Pacific region. However, China will remain a developing country for a long period of time, and China's development will not constitute a challenge to other countries because China does not have such a strategic will.

The peaceful development of the Asia-Pacific region requires a new political, economic and security pattern and the creation of more space for the development of emerging markets, such as China. China and the United States strengthening consultation is conducive to ensure a peaceful interest distribution method of the Asia-Pacific region in the transitory stage and will also help both sides adapt to their exchanges in the new pattern of the future.

Some countries in the Asia-Pacific region are concerned about the rise of China. Some traditional allies of the United States still expect it to counterbalance China and their mindsets are understandable. The countries seeking to counterbalance China simply aim to use such a balance to maintain regional peace and stability and maximize interests for their development.

The more results the China-U.S. cooperation produces, the more benefits they will receive. None of the countries are willing to face a situation in which they will have to choose which side they will be on, China or the United States. The confrontation between China and the United States is harmful to both sides, because it will not only increase the development costs of both sides, but also lead to the loss of security in the region.

As for the entire Asia Pacific region, the peaceful coexistence between China and the United States is beneficial to both sides and all of the parties involved. Therefore, the China-U.S. consultation on Asia-Pacific affairs to be held in Hawaii is of considerable symbolic significance. The island is located in the middle ground between Beijing and Washington D.C. and is around 8,000 kilometers away from both of the two capitals. What a huge area it will be when drawing a circle with Hawaii in the center and with its radius covering both capitals.

By People's Daily Online and the author is Ding Gang.

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