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China and US should rebuild consensus: Fu Ying

(People's Daily Online)    10:11, May 11, 2016

Fu Ying, chairwoman of Foreign Affairs Committee of the National People's Congress(NPC) of China delivers a speech themed "China and the US, Rebuilding Consensus?" at Stanford University on May 10, 2016. (People's Daily Online/Gong Xin)

Fu Ying, chairperson of Foreign Affairs Committee of China's National People's Congress said that China and the United States need to build new consensus on bilateral relationship during her speech at Stanford University on Tuesday.

Fu is also the chairperson of Academic Committee of China’s Institute of International Strategy. Invited by Stanford University, Fu Ying made a speech themed "China and the US, Rebuilding Consensus?" on May 10, beginning with her perception of the gap lying in real life and U.S. perspectives on the China-US relationship.

She said that Chicago University professor Mearsheimer once told her that he considered China as a revisionist in international politics, trying to drive the US out of the Western Pacific. He stated that if China continued to grow at the current speed, US-China conflict would be unavoidable. A year later, the wind seemed to blow in the direction the Professor predicted. The media is painting the South China Sea as a new geopolitical wrestling ground for our two countries. Some are even foreseeing conflict.

"However, if you look at what is happening in real life in many other fields, you see a different picture, " said Fu, "President Xi Jinping and President Obama have had lengthy meetings at least twice a year, covering wide-ranging subjects giving strong push to the relationship by initiating important cooperation programs."

China has turned into the biggest trading partner of the US on the monthly basis. Last year, nearly 5 million people travelled between our two countries. Even the two militaries which appear to have difficulties are actually engaged in more exchanges and dialogues than before.

"I was told by our consulate here that there is one flight every 16 minutes between China and the US with 15,000 people traveling a day and about 500 flights a week. On global issues such as climate change and nuclear security, the two countries’ partnership is playing a leading role globally." She asked "So which is the real state of China-US relationship? Or both are real?"

There is no denying the fact that the ground is shifting in China-US relations resulted from China’s fast economic growth. The need for cooperation and the impact of competition are both growing. The gap between perceptions and real life may reflect the need to rebuild consensus.

Following is the excerpt of her speech on the China-US relationship.

What are the main concerns from China and the United States?

On the American side: First, many are expressing doubts about whether “the constructive engagement” policy that 8 successive US administrations followed should continue, as it was based on the assumption that by supporting market-oriented reforms, the US would see political changes in China. Now it’s not happening. So they conclude that “the constructive engagement” has failed its purposes and there need to be a new grand strategy.

Secondly, the confidence about China’s economic prospect is waning as its growth is slowing down. There is concern that China’s possible hard landing will spill-over and affect the US recovery. Though still attracted to the Chinese market, some US businesses are disappointed that the reform dividend is shrinking. Some scholars are citing the diverse views in the Chinese society as basis for speculations for China’s reform direction.

Thirdly, there is rising anxiety about what global role China is going to play. A view often heard from the US is that China is seeking to dominate the Asia-Pacific and replace the US leadership. "This we see as a reflection of the US’s own fear of losing its primacy in the world," She said. 

On the other hand, there is no shortage of optimistic voices from the US. They see China’s future role to be determined by its own culture and policy, as well as how it interacts with the outside world.


(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Wu Chengliang,Bianji)

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