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Canadian and Chinese diplomacies hope to find common ground

Andy Wong Associated Press In an English translation of the statement released Thursday by the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and published in official media, Wang Yi (above) was quoted as saying that Canada and China have no conflicting interests or historical battles, and presented three ways in which Ottawa could improve their relations with Beijing.

Dylan Robertson – The Canadian Press in Ottawa

January 12, 2024

  • Canada

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mélanie Joly, and her Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, say they want to find common ground and maintain communication, despite tensions across the Pacific.

The two officials spoke Thursday, four months after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said rapprochement with China would be impossible, in part because of concerns about foreign interference.

This call was made at the request of Ms. Joly, and the minister's office says it is part of her promise to adopt a pragmatic approach to diplomacy and to continue discussions with countries with which Ottawa is in contact. disagreement.

Both countries acknowledged ongoing diplomatic tensions in their statements while implying that the other side was behind the tensions.

However, both are committed to maintaining open channels of communication.

The two ministers also discussed the conflict between Israel and Hamas, Russia's invasion of Ukraine and cooperation in the fight against climate change.

The two countries tasked their officials with advancing next steps, such as increasing Chinese-Canadian people-to-people exchanges and cooperation on trade and biodiversity.

Beijing detained Canadian citizens Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig from late 2018 until fall 2021 and imposed multi-year bans on certain Canadian imports, in what was widely seen as retaliation for the arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver on a US extradition warrant.

The Chinese government excluded Canada from a decision last year to ease restrictions on group travel abroad, arguing that Ottawa had “exaggerated” allegations of interference foreign.

In an English translation of the statement released Thursday by China's Foreign Ministry and published in state media, Wang was quoted as saying that the two countries have significant influence in the Asia-Pacific region. He said Canada and China have no conflicting interests or historical battles, and outlined three ways Ottawa could improve its relationship with Beijing.

China offers ways to improve relations

The first involves Canada acknowledging that it has caused a diplomatic rift, although Mr. Wang has not explained how.

Liberals disagree with this characterization, arguing that China upholds different values ​​and disrupts the world order. Wang says China does not question international rules, but rather seeks development.

The second is “mutual respect,” which he says involves recognizing Taiwan as part of China and working constructively, “so as not to let differences dominate bilateral relations.”

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The third is to focus on “win-win cooperation”, for example avoiding the politicization of trade and “pan-security economic issues”. The request comes as the United States and its allies limit China's access to certain microchip technologies and the ownership of foreign assets by Chinese state-owned enterprises.

Mr. Trudeau declined to say whether U.S. semiconductor bans went beyond national security concerns and instead sought to hinder Beijing's economic growth.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116