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Thursday, August 27, 2015, 10:02

China, US should focus on what really matters: Envoy

By Xinhua

China, US should focus on what really matters: Envoy
Cui Tiankai, China’s Ambassador to the US participates in the Plenary Session of the US-China Consultation on People-to-People Exchange during the seventh US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue at the US State Department in Washington DC, June 24, 2015. (AFP PHOTO / CHRIS KLEPONIS)

WASHINGTON - Despite thorny issues that often dominate the headlines, China and the United States are working closely on almost every major global issue, Chinese ambassador to the US Cui Tiankai wrote in an article published in an American magazine Wednesday.

"This cooperation is not only out of good will, but also on the fundamental interest of both countries and their shared responsibilities to the world," Cui wrote in the article titled "China and America: Stay Focused on What Really Matters".

Cui cited the landmark expansion of the Information Technology Agreement (ITA) in July this year, the first major tariff-eliminating deal at the World Trade Organization in almost two decades. Because of this deal, about IT trade worth US$1.3 trillion will be conducted with zero tariff rate per year,  benefiting numerous businesses, workers and consumers worldwide.

"This deal would not have been possible without a critical agreement between China and the United States last November and close coordination and cooperation between the two sides," he wrote.

What really matters to China and the US, the world's two most important trading countries and the second-largest trading partner for each other, is not who has the privilege to write trade rules, but how to write rules together with other countries in a bid to jointly promote open, transparent and rule-based economic cooperation that benefits all. "Certainly a lot more can be done down the road," said the ambassador.

According to the Chinese envoy, tackling climate change is a priority for both China and the United States.

The US demand for solar panels and wind turbines is rising rapidly, and Chinese companies can provide high-quality and economical products to meet that demand.

In order for this to happen, Cui said, the United States should lift outdated restrictions on the export of high-tech energy products and avoid implementing unbalanced trade remedy actions against Chinese products.

On the Iranian nuclear negotiations, the envoy said, it could not have been brought about without effective China-US cooperation.

"In Africa, there is no competition over who is a better partner of African countries. If China and the United States can work effectively together and contribute to the peace and prosperity of this continent, both will be better partners of African countries," said Cui.

Even on controversial issues, Cui said, cooperation instead of confrontation is key to finding solutions. The United States admits that it has no territorial claim in the South China Sea and basically shares the same goal as China - keeping sea-lanes safe and open for business.

On cyber security, he said: "China is a major victim of cyberattacks", pointing out a large portion of such activities originated from foreign countries.

As Chinese President Xi Jinping will pay his first state visit to the United States in September, Cui expressed the hope that "his meetings with President Obama will give further guidance to the building of a new model of major country relations between our two great nations, and bring greater benefits to our two peoples."

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