Xi’s diplomacy wins friends, FM says

March 9, 2018

BEIJING (INP): The diplomacy to be rolled out by President Xi Jinping as head of state this year will “write a whole new chapter” of major-country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics in the new era, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said.

Xi will chair four major events to be hosted by China at home this year, Wang noted at a news conference when asked about the kind of diplomacy conducted by the top Chinese leader.

Diplomacy by heads of state is the highest form of international exchange, and it comes with strategic value that exchanges in other forms cannot replace, Wang said.

This year China will host the Boao Forum for Asia annual conference, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit, the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation Summit and the first China International Import Expo.

Xi will also attend the BRICS Summit in South Africa, the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting in Papua New Guinea and the G20 Summit in Argentina this year.

Xi’s diplomatic style shows his dedication to the welfare of Chinese people, as well as his sense of duty to China and the world, Wang said.

Reviewing Xi’s diplomatic footprints, Wang said the president has been personally involved-and has acted as the chief architect-in planning and executing China’s top-level diplomacy.

Xi has visited 57 countries and received more than 110 foreign heads of state since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in 2012. Such diplomacy has deepened the world’s understanding of China, boosted China’s profile and influence and laid down a blueprint for the resolution of many global problems, Wang said.

Xi’s leadership and charisma have earned him and his country many friends among foreign leaders representing a diverse range of cultures and social systems, he added.

The term “head-of-state diplomacy” was mentioned by Xi as he hosted visiting President Donald Trump of the United States in November.

He noted that he and Trump agreed to maintain contact at the highest level as they strategically navigate bilateral ties.

Ruan Zongze, vice-president of the China Institute of International Studies, said head-of-state diplomacy allows political navigation to take place at a strategic height, and it boosts China’s ties with other countries.

Such top-level interaction has helped boost global governance by bringing China’s wisdom into play as anti-globalization ideas are spreading and trade protectionism is on the rise, Ruan said.