India, China need to “deepen cooperation” to fight trade protectionism

New Delhi: China has called for deeper cooperation with India to fight trade protectionism, and accused the United States of provoking trade disputes.

In a statement issued by Counselor Ji Rong, the spokesperson of the Chinese Embassy in India, he said: “China and India need to deepen cooperation to fight trade protectionism.” China is firmly against the use of “Indo-Pacific” tool which is being used to counter the country’s economic development, the statement underscored.

Terming India and China as major developing nations, China said, “As the two largest developing countries and major emerging markets, China and India are both in the vital stage of deepening reform and developing economy and both need stable external environment. Practicing unilateral trade protectionism in the name of “national security” and “fair trade” will not only affect China’s economic development, but also undermine the external environment of India and hinder India’s booming economy.”

Rong further pointed that at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke with one voice to safeguard the multilateral trading system and free trade.

While mentioning at length about the unilateralism and bullying activities by the US, the statement underlined that India and China have common interests in defending the multilateral trading system and free trade.
Rong also recalled the publishing of the “Qingdao Declaration” and the 10th BRICS Summit Johannesburg Declaration in which the two nations stood together against protectionism.

Taking a dig at the US, Rong said that China has always followed the principle of non-interference in internal affairs of others whereas the US has been interfering in the internal matters of developing nations including India and China on the pretext of human rights and religious matters.

Addressing the accusations hurled at China by the US Vice President Mike Pence about military aggression and predatory economic practices, Rong said that the accusations are groundless.

He further urged the US to understand China’s development in a right way and stop its misguided comments and actions which are harming China’s core interest.

“China is unswervingly pressing ahead with comprehensively deepening reform and opening wider to the outside world. China is committed to the path of peaceful development and forging a community with a shared future for mankind,” Rong added.

Terming the militarisation of the South China Sea a “distortion of facts”, Rong asked the US to “stop making troubles and creating tensions, and respect the efforts of relevant parties to resolve problems through negotiation and consultation.”

Defending its economic policies, China addressed the US’ allegations of putting some developing countries into “debt trap” and called it an “attempt to sow discord.”

“China’s economic cooperation with other developing countries is committed to win-win cooperation and common development,” Rong asserted.

Touching upon US Secretary of State Michael R Pompeo’s recent visit to China amid the trade friction, the counselor said that the two nations addressed the need of cooperation in order to achieve a “win-win outcome.”
While maintaining that the US has nothing against China, Rong said that the two sides discussed several issues.

“During his visit to China, Pompeo said the US and China have differences on many issues, but the US is not against China’s development and has no intention to contain China. The US is willing to strengthen communication with China, and together work out constructive solution to the current challenges,” he said.

Pompeo visited China on October 3, where he met with Yang Jiechi, member of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the CPC Central Committee, and Wang Yi, State Councilor and Foreign Minister of China.