BEIJING, July 31 (Xinhua) -- President Xi Jinping has championed efforts to build China into a maritime power, adding that the country will pursue "converging interests" with other countries in oceanic development.
At a study session with members of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee on Tuesday, Xi called for efforts to learn more about and further manage maritime development.
China will safeguard its maritime rights and interests, and make overall plans and take all factors into consideration, he said.
Xi said China will adhere to the path of peaceful development, but "in no way will the country abandon its legitimate rights and interests, nor will it give up its core national interests."
The president said China will "use peaceful means and negotiations to settle disputes and strive to safeguard peace and stability."
Meanwhile, he stressed that China will prepare to cope with complexities, enhance its capacity in safeguarding maritime rights and interests, and resolutely safeguard its maritime rights and interests.
The country will adhere to the policy of "shelving disputes and carrying out joint development" for areas over which China owns sovereign rights, while also promoting mutually beneficial and friendly cooperation and seeking and expanding common converging interests with other countries, Xi said.
In the 21st century, oceans and seas have an increasingly important role to play in a country's economic development and opening up to the outside world, he said.
Their status has become more prominent in regards to safeguarding state sovereignty, national security and development interests, as well as the advancement of a country's ecological civilization.
The oceans and seas have an increasingly important strategic status concerning global competition in the spheres of politics, economic development, military, and technology, he said.
The key report to the 18th National Congress of the CPC held last November outlined the "maritime power" strategy, calling for enhanced capacity for exploiting marine resources, protecting the marine environment and safeguarding China's maritime rights and interests.
At the study session, Xi underscored efforts to make marine industries a pillar of China's national economy.
Relevant parties should improve the capability and enlarge the fields for exploiting marine resources so as to "cultivate the marine economy into a new growth point of the country," he said.
Xi also emphasized the "sustainable exploitation of marine resources," saying that exploitation and protection, as well as pollution control and ecological remediation, should all be taken into account.
"All-out efforts should be made to curb the trend of the deterioration of the marine ecological environment," Xi said.
"(The authorities) should be resolute in taking measures to achieve remarkable improvement in the marine ecological environment and ensure safe seafood, blue seas and skies, and clean beaches for the public," he said.
Pollutants from land-based sources should be effectively controlled and the establishment of an ecological compensation mechanism should be accelerated, according to Xi.
China should forcefully develop high-end and advanced oceanic technologies in order to build China into a maritime power, Xi noted.
He urged relevant authorities to make breakthroughs in major fields like deep water, green and oceanic safety technologies and promote research and development of core technologies and key generic technologies that are essential for marine economic restructuring.
"China's maritime cause has generally entered the best period of development after years of efforts," said the president.
Xi said China must strive for unified development in the ocean and on land as well as seek a harmonious human-ocean relationship during the development.
China will depend on the ocean to prosper and will steadily promote the building of its maritime power through peaceful and mutually beneficial cooperation, he said.
Zeng Hengyi, deputy chief engineer of the China National Offshore Oil Corp., and Gao Zhiguo, a researcher with the China Institute for Marine Affairs under the State Oceanic Administration, made representations and put forward their suggestions regarding maritime power at the session.
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