China-Australia relations back on right track, to move forward: Chinese FM


CANBERRA, March 20 (Xinhua) — China-Australia relations are back on the right track, there should be no hesitation, no yawing and no turning back, and bilateral ties should move forward, visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said here on Wednesday.

That is in line with common interests of the two peoples and general 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 Communist Party of China Central Committee, said that the key to China-Australia relations is to seek common ground while reserving differences, as common interests between the two countries far outweigh their differences.

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

Wang also stressed the importance of mutual respect, saying that China has never interfered in Australia’s internal affairs, and respects the system and path chosen by Australia, and similarly, on China’s sovereignty, dignity and legitimate concerns, it is hoped that the Australian side will continue to abide by commitments it has made since the establishment of diplomatic relations, and respect and properly address them.

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, Wang said.

He went on to say that it is imperative to insist on mutual benefit and win-win situation, stressing economies of China and Australia are highly complementary and have huge potential.

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

Wang said the most valuable thing is to adhere to independence, and China has always pursued an independent and peaceful foreign policy, and China’s policy toward Australia is consistent, and independence could also be an important principle of Australia’s foreign policy.

The development of China-Australia relations is not directed at a third party, nor should it be influenced or disturbed by a third party, said the Chinese foreign minister.

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

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