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Commentary: New U.S. gov't needs to craft more constructive China policy

English.news.cn   2012-11-07 16:28:55            

by Liu Chang

BEIJING, Nov. 7 (Xinhua) -- As U.S. President Barack Obama finally fended off Republican challenger Mitt Romney in Tuesday's presidential race, it is hoped that the new Obama administration would set a more constructive tone in crafting its China policy.

For four years, China-U.S. relations, which Obama himself dubbed as the world's most important, has zigzagged forward.

On his watch, the U.S. government has sold a huge amount of arms to Taiwan, received the Dalai Lama at the White House, frequently stirred up trade disputes and currency spats with China, and blatantly meddled in China's territorial rows with its neighbors, each of which has effectively whittled down the two nations' mutual trust.

And during the year-long presidential campaign, both Obama and his GOP rival Romney put a lot of energy into discrediting China, unfairly calling Beijing a trade cheater, a currency manipulator, a U.S. job stealer and a rules breaker.

In fact, all these mud-slinging and trouble-making offenses against China have been around for years, and are essentially a product of Washington's uneasiness over China's three decades of rapid economic growth, as well as its lack of the most basic trust in China's determination to rise peacefully.

It is natural for the U.S., which is the world's largest economy, and a primary builder and beneficiary of the current international economic and political order, to have difficulty completely disarming its suspicions toward China, which is politically, economically and culturally different.

However, the U.S. should know nothing in the world remains forever unchanged, and that China will never abort its development objective simply because of Washington's unwarranted anxiety.

Moreover, as the two countries have been ever more economically interwoven, a new U.S. government perhaps should start to learn how to build a more rational and constructive relationship with China.

Putting these disagreements and disamenity aside, the Obama administration has worked with China over the past four years to set up a series of communication platforms, drive up two-way trade to historic numbers, and agree on forging a partnership based on mutual trust and mutual benefit.

Now that the most pressing task confronting America is to energize the slack economic recovery and slash stubbornly high unemployment, the new Obama administration perhaps should bear in mind that a stronger and more dynamic China-U.S. relationship, especially in trade, will not only provide U.S. investment with rich business opportunities, but also help to revive the sagging global economy.

In dealing with trade disputes, the new administration maybe should begin to level the playing field for Chinese companies rather than dish out more trade protectionist moves.

It is also suggested the U.S. change its rather uncooperative attitude in removing or easing export restrictions on high-technology products to China, an important reason for U.S. trade deficits with China.

Both sides should work together to establish an effective and institutionalized mechanism so that all future trade spats can be professionally and properly handled, leaving the overall bilateral cooperation unharmed.

Additionally, while the new Obama administration is set to carry on its "pivot to Asia" policy, it is expected that China's legitimate and core interests and rightful requests to sustain growth should be truly respected.

Forty years ago, former U.S. President Richard Nixon wrote one of the most revered pages in his presidency by making an ice-breaking visit to China, which made the current vigorous bilateral cooperation possible.

Now Obama has a unique opportunity to make an even more far-reaching impact on China-U.S. ties, if he has the political courage and wisdom to cast away the uncalled-for worries over China's rise and forge with the ancient Oriental civilization a mutually beneficial partnership that will underpin their common development in the years ahead.

Editor: Deng Shasha
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