Chinese Vice-Premier Wu Yi, serving as a special envoy for Chinese
President Hu Jintao, will attend the second round of the
China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue in Washington on May 22 and
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Jiang Yu confirmed this in Beijing
on Tuesday afternoon, adding that the dialogue would be co-chaired
by Wu and US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson.
After hoping that the dialogue would break new ground in Sino-US
strategic cooperative relations, Jiang revealed that the topics
addressed would center on services, investment transparency, energy
and environment, balanced growth and innovation. Wu will head up a
delegation including representatives from the Ministry of Finance,
Ministry of Commerce and the National Development and Reform
The May meeting will be the second strategic economic dialogue,
following the inaugural one last December. Despite its short
history, the dialogue mechanism has already cemented its position
of importance as a platform for bilateral debate on long-term
strategic and economic issues, Jiang said.
Jiang addressed recent tensions between the two sides by saying
that trade cooperation remained an important issue for the US and
"When trade grows fast, some friction is inevitable but we hope
the two sides will resolve their disputes in a spirit of rational
and candid dialogue and consultation," Jiang stressed.
Statistics demonstrate real progress in two-way trade which
surged to US$263 billion in 2006, comforting China and the US'
positions as each other's second largest trading partners.
Responding to a question on a US Senate bill seeking to regulate
China's exchange rate policy proposed by some US senators, Jiang
hoped that the US would gain better understanding China's exchange
rate management policies.
African Development Bank meetings
Jiang said that China viewed the African Development Bank (ADB) Group meetings
in Shanghai as a way of fostering economic and trade cooperation
with Africa, Jiang said.
Jiang said the Chinese government fully backed this event and
will always seek to help reduce poverty and boost development in
the African continent.
Last year, China's total investment in Africa topped US$11.7
billion, principally being poured into infrastructure construction.
Further plans exist for China to help create 30 hospitals, 100
rural schools, 30 malaria prevention centers and 10 agricultural
pilot centers across Africa within three years.
Turning to the issue of the China-funded Merowe dam in Sudan,
Jiang said the project willl assist Sudan's social and economic
development and improve the lot of local people.
Japan urged to stick to pacifist path
Jiang reiterated China's hopes that Japan will stick to peaceful
development, responding to a bill in the Japanese Parliament that
could lead to a referendum on changing the nation's pacifist
Due to historical reasons, Japan's pacifist ways are of great
interest to its Asian neighbors, said Jiang, adding that "Japanese
people have chosen the correct path of peaceful development after
World War II, and we hope Japan will continue to move in that
China, Japan, S Korea to Converge for
Foreign Affairs Consultation
Senior foreign affairs officials of China, Japan and South Korea
will hold a first-ever consultation in Beijing on May 19.
The consultation is part of a consensus reached this January at
the seventh trilateral leaders' meeting of China, Japan and South
Korea when Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and leaders from Japan and South
Korea agreed to establish a mechanism of regular consultations
among senior foreign affairs officials of the three countries.
The three sides are expected to communicate on issues of common
concern and properly handle the concerns of each country, according
to a joint press statement of January's trilateral leaders' meeting
Chinese Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Cui Tiankai,
Japanese Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs Mitoji Yabunaka and
Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of South Korea Shim
Yoon-jo will attend the consultation.
Taiwan's attempt to join WHO will never
Jiang poured scorn on Taiwan's attempt to join the World Health
Organization (WHO), labeling it doomed to failure.
"The Taiwan authorities' attempt to use the health card to
promote 'de jure Taiwan independence' will never succeed," said
The 60th World Health Assembly (WHA) on Monday rejected
including a proposal to make Taiwan a "member state" of the WHO on
its provisional agenda.
Jiang said Taiwan authorities had garnered support from a few
countries but that the vast majority of WHO member states stood
united against the proposal.
The WHO is only open to sovereign states, making Taiwan
ineligible, she said, adding that this show of strength showed the
resoluteness of the international community in supporting the
one-China policy and in rejecting such a proposal for the 11th
China to carefully preserve Soviet Red Army
China will always preserve Soviet Red Army graves in China and
asked Russia and Estonia to discover a proper solution to their
dispute over the removal of a Soviet-era war memorial in Estonia,
She praised the Soviet Red Army for its contribution to the
defeat of fascism in the world and said the Chinese people would
never forget the help received by Red Army during the war against
On April 27, Estonia took down the statue of a Red Army soldier
at Tynismyagi Square in the capital Tallinn, moving it to a
military cemetery in the southern part of the capital.
The Bronze Soldier monument, dating back to 1947, stood as a
symbol of Red Army soldiers who died during World War II and topped
the graves of Red Army soldiers.
Russia's reaction was one of anger and disbelief as violent
protests led by ethnic Russians erupted across the Baltic
World Bank in crisis
Jiang said that China hopes the crisis miring the World Bank due
to its president Paul Wolfowitz will not adversely affect its
Jiang said China trusts the World Bank's executive board to
clear up the problem in a spirit of equality, justice and
effectiveness, to allow the Bank to restore normalcy to its
The World Bank executive board will meet with World Bank
President Paul Wolfowitz on Tuesday to decide his future, said the
bank in a statement released on Monday.
"The executive directors have this afternoon received the second
report of the ad hoc group ... They will meet with Mr. Wolfowitz at
5: 00 PM (2200 GMT) on Tuesday as part of their deliberation on the
report," said the statement.
Wolfowitz is under pressure for apparently signing off on a pay
raise and promotion for his girlfriend, a bank employee. The bank
president has admitted fault on both these counts upon receiving
advice from the bank's ethics board.
China opposes German Parliament
criticism of reeducation through labor system
China slammed a resolution passed by German parliament attacking
China's reeducation through labor system.
"The German parliament ignores China's democratic and legal
achievements, but seeks to interfere in China's internal affairs
through distorted attacks on China's reeducation through labor
system," Jiang said.
The system has been built upon laws and regulations approved by
the Standing Committee of China's National People's Congress and
the State Council, said Jiang, adding that it has proven effective
in preventing and reducing crimes as well as maintaining public
According to Jiang, the reeducation center safeguards the
legitimate rights and interests of those sent there whilst the
inmates keep their rights of vote, the freedom of religious belief
Besides, Jiang insisted, they are treated with dignity and
regard whilst not being subjected to torture or abuse, said
China believes in international dialogue and cooperation on
human rights based on equality and mutual respect, the spokesperson
said, but China will always oppose any move to use human rights to
pry into other states' internal affairs.
China praises visit by Top US Pacific
Jiang spoke positively of top US Pacific commander Timothy
Keating's China tour, saying it would help promote China-US
Keating, Commander-in-Chief of the US Pacific Command, visited
Beijing and eastern China's Nanjing City from May 10 to 14,
representing his first visit to China since assuming his duties in
Keating met with senior Chinese military leaders and foreign
ministry officials and discussed bilateral military relations and
regional issues with senior experts and scholars from the country's
foremost military institutions.
This is the latest example of a series of military exchanges
between the two countries. During Keating's stay here, a delegation
from the US National Defense University Capstone Program, headed by
retired general William Nyland, also visited Beijing to meet with
Deputy Chief of General Staff of the Chinese People's Liberation
Army Zhang Li.
Back in late March, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff
Peter Pace also paid his first visit to China.
N Korea funds issue solutions should be
acceptable to all
China called for any settlement of the North Korea frozen funds
issue to address all parties' concerns.
Jiang said China has maintained close contact with all parties
as they strive to resolve the matter soon.
"It is hard to avoid obstacles in the process of six-party
talks, which bears great responsibilities. We believe parties
concerned are capable of overcoming these difficulties and pushing
forward the talks," Jiang said.
After the February phase of the six-party talks, North Korea
agreed to shut down and seal its Yongbyon nuclear facility upon the
return of its US$25 million funds frozen in the Banco Delta Asia
(BDA) in Macao.
The US blacklisted the BDA in September 2005, accusing it of
being a money-laundering front for North Korea, a charge vigorously
denied by the DPRK.
Panama medicine issue
Jiang said the Chinese government has launched an immediate
investigation into the Panama medicine issue, after foreign media
reported a Chinese company had manufactured and sold a fake drug
component which caused dozens of deaths in Panama. Jiang promised
full disclosure of any results found by the investigation.
Turning to the matter of a South Korean ship that sunk off the
coast of East China's Shandong Province after colliding with another
vessel on Saturday, Jiang announced the launch of a massive search
and rescue operation for the 16 missing sailors and extended
sympathies to their families.
"With the ships having collided in Bohai Bay, China is treating
the issue with the utmost seriousness and is going all out to
rescue the sailors," she said, adding that over 200 Chinese ships
supported by aircraft have joined the search.
In other developments, Jiang said that South African Foreign
Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma will pay an official visit to China
from May 20-22 after being invited by Chinese Foreign Minister Yang
Jiechi. New Zealand Foreign Minister Winston Peters will also visit
the country from May 21-26.
(Xinhua News Agency, China Daily May 16, 2007)