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Wang Yi Meets with EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell Fontelles

On July 15, 2021 local time, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with High Representative of the European Union (EU) for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell Fontelles in Tashkent.

Wang Yi said that our video meeting a week ago was in-depth and candid, which achieved the purpose of enhancing trust and dispelling misgivings. We both believe that the important principles of China-EU relations are mutual respect and seeking common ground while shelving differences. As long as we truly achieve this, there will be no insurmountable difficulties or problems that can't be resolved. Because there is no fundamental conflict of interest between China and the EU, neither China nor the EU seeks global hegemony, and both China and the EU adhere to and practice multilateralism. The two sides should work together to broaden the scope of China-EU cooperation, stick to the keynote of mutual benefit and win-win outcomes, properly manage differences and refrain from imposing one's own will on others.

Wang Yi said, that the 1.4 billion Chinese people move toward modernization is a magnificent chapter of human progress, which benefits not only China but also the world. He hopes that the EU will view China's development from the perspective of the development of mankind with goodwill and positivity, and the two sides will learn from each other and make common progress.

Wang Yi pointed out that China welcomes the EU's initiative on global connectivity. Some people claim that the EU's initiative is intended to confront the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) proposed by China. I don't think the EU is so narrow-minded. China holds that various connectivity initiatives can be linked up and coordinated to form synergy. The BRI adheres to the principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits, and pursues open, clean and green cooperation as well as high standard cooperation to improve people's lives and promote sustainable development. China and the EU share a lot of common ground in the general direction. We can complement each other and work together to promote connectivity among countries and accelerate the development and revitalization of the Eurasian continent.

Borrell said that despite the differences between the EU and China, the EU believes that China should be respected, and the EU does not want to confront China and will not participate in any form of a new Cold War. The world needs more cooperation between China and the EU, and there is much room for improvement in EU-China relations. The EU is committed to a better mutual understanding with China, welcomes China's development and revitalization and is willing to have candid dialogues on the existing differences to push for continuous improvement of EU-China relations. The EU's connectivity initiative is by no means a confrontation with the BRI. We are willing to strengthen coordination with China to align the EU's connectivity initiative with the BRI. We are also willing to enhance cooperation with China in addressing climate change.

The two sides also had in-depth exchanges on the Afghan issue and the Iranian nuclear issue. Wang Yi said that China is ready to maintain communication with the EU on the situation in Afghanistan and the resumption of negotiations on the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), to prevent an all-out civil war in Afghanistan and bring the JCPOA back on track. Borrell said that the EU hopes to work with the international community including China to promote stability in Afghanistan and the resumption of the implementation of the JCPOA by the United States and Iran at an early date.

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