CHINA-AUSTRALIA RELATIONS BACK ON THE RIGHT TRACK TO MOVE FORWARD, SAYS CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTER

2024-03-21

 

China-Australia relations are back on the right track, and there should be no hesitation, change of direction, or backtracking, and bilateral ties should move forward, said Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Wednesday.

 

This is in line with the common interests of the two peoples and the overall expectations of regional countries, Wang said while holding the seventh China-Australia Foreign and Strategic Dialogue with his Australian counterpart, Penny Wong.

 

Wang, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, said that the key to China-Australia relations is to seek common ground while shelving differences, as the common interests between the two countries far outweigh their differences.

 

While acknowledging the differences, it is more important for the two countries to manage and overcome the differences, he said.

 

Wang also emphasized the importance of mutual respect, stating that China has never interfered in Australia's internal affairs and respects the system and path chosen by Australia, and similarly, regarding China's sovereignty, dignity, and legitimate concerns, it is expected that the Australian side will continue to fulfill the commitments it made since the establishment of diplomatic relations and respect and handle them properly.

 

The ups and downs of the past 10 years have not only shown lessons that need to be learned but also accumulated experiences that need to be cherished, said Wang.

 

He stated that it is imperative to insist on mutual respect and win-win situation, while also emphasizing that the economies of China and Australia are highly complementary and have enormous potential.

 

Bilateral trade grew last year, with nearly 80% of Australia's foreign trade surplus coming from its trade with China, he said, adding that the right thing to do is to strive to expand common interests and provide a favorable business environment for investment and operation of companies in both countries.

 

Wang said the most valuable thing is to adhere to independence, that China has always sought an independent and peaceful foreign policy, and China's policy towards Australia is consistent, and independence can also be an important principle of Australia's foreign policy.

 

The development of China-Australia relations is not intended for third parties, nor should it be influenced or disturbed by third parties, said the Chinese Foreign Minister.

 

The two countries should work together to establish a more stable and fruitful strategic partnership, Wang said, pointing out that this year marks the 10th anniversary of the comprehensive bilateral strategic partnership.

 

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