Webinar: Black Liberation and People’s China – Rediscovering a history of transcontinental solidarity

Date Saturday 11 May
Time4pm Britain / 11am US Eastern / 8am US Pacific

This year marks the 65th anniversary of the historic visit to China by Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois, where, together with his wife Shirley Graham Du Bois, the great scholar and revolutionary celebrated his 91st birthday on February 23rd, 1959.

This anniversary provides a fitting opportunity to reflect on a remarkable and enduring link between two peoples fighting for their liberation on opposite sides of the Pacific and under very different circumstances. This transcontinental solidarity between the Chinese revolution and the African-American freedom struggle neither begins nor ends with Dr. Du Bois. It embraces Langston Hughes and Paul Robeson; Robert F. and Mabel Williams; the Black Panther Party; Amiri Baraka; and many others, joined by Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai and Chinese American progressives and returned overseas Chinese like Tang Mingzhao.

Speakers

  • Professor Gerald Horne, John J. and Rebecca Moores Chair of History and African American Studies, University of Houston; Author of numerous books, including W.E.B Du Bois: A Biography and Black and Red: W.E.B Du Bois and the Afro-American Response to the Cold War
  • Dr. Charisse Burden-Stelly, Associate Professor of African American Studies, Wayne State University; Author, including of Black Scare/Red Scare: Theorizing Capitalist Racism in the United States and W.E.B Du Bois: A Life in American History (co-authored with Gerald Horne)
  • Dr. Gao Yunxiang, Professor of History, Toronto Metropolitan University and author of Arise Africa! Roar China!: Black and Chinese Citizens of the World in the Twentieth Century
  • Dr. Zifeng Liu, Post Doctoral Scholar, Africana Research Center, Pennsylvania State University, Author of Redrawing the Balance of Power: Black Left Feminists, China, and the Making of an Afro-Asian Political Imaginary, 1949-1976 (Ph.D thesis; book forthcoming)
  • Margaret Kimberley, Executive Editor and Senior Columnist, Black Agenda Report; Author of Prejudential: Black America and the Presidents
  • Qiao Collective, a diaspora Chinese media collective challenging US aggression against China.

To explore these historic connections and their contemporary significance for the global anti-imperialist struggle and the fight against the new cold war, this webinar is being organised by Friends of Socialist China and the International Manifesto Group.

CPC and Workers’ Party of Brazil hold theory seminar in Beijing

A significant step was taken in consolidating the institutionalised and maturing relationship between China and the Latin American left, with the holding in Beijing of the seventh theory seminar between the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the Workers’ Party of Brazil (PT) on April 9.

Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee and Chinese President, and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Honorary President of the PT and Brazilian President, sent congratulatory letters to the seminar.

Xi noted that after the PT returned to power in January 2023, it had vigorously promoted development strategies and stayed committed to achieving sustainable and comprehensive development of Brazil.

He said the seminar focused on strengthening the ruling party building and exploring the path to modernisation, which is timely and of great significance to strengthening the capacity building of the ruling parties of the two countries and exploring the modernisation paths suited for their own national conditions.

Xi also noted that this year marks the 50th anniversary of the China-Brazil diplomatic ties and the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the CPC-PT relations. The CPC is willing to deepen exchanges and mutual learning with the PT on governance, and promote party building and national development, so as to make greater contributions to the continuous development of China-Brazil relations in the new era and the building of a community with a shared future for humanity.

Lula said in his letter that last year, he and General Secretary Xi had worked together to take the two countries’ comprehensive strategic partnership to a new level. Brazil-China relations are important not only to the two countries but also to the whole world, he added, noting that the two sides will work together to consolidate traditional mechanisms of global governance such as the United Nations, while strengthening key mechanisms of South-South cooperation such as the Group of 77 and China, BRICS, the China-CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) Forum and the BASIC countries (grouping Brazil, South Africa, India and China). He further noted that the relationship between the PT and the CPC is an important part of the relationship between the two countries and expressed confidence that the exchanges between the two parties, the two governments and the two peoples will be closer and more fruitful.

Themed on “strengthening the building of the ruling party and exploring the road to modernisation”, the seminar involved in-depth discussions on strengthening experience exchanges in party building and state governance, and promoting the development of China-Brazil relations.    

Liu Jianchao, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee (IDCPC), said that cooperation between China and Brazil, the largest developing countries and representatives of emerging market economies in the eastern and western hemispheres, is not only crucial to boosting the development of the two countries, but also has strategic significance and global influence that transcends the bilateral scope. Both China and Brazil have independent political backgrounds, shoulder the historical mission of development and revitalisation, and adhere to the positions of fairness and justice.

Currently, the CPC is uniting and leading the Chinese people of all ethnic groups to advance the noble cause of building a great country and national rejuvenation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernisation. And the PT is vigorously promoting Brazil’s re-industrialisation plan and New Growth Acceleration Program. The development strategies of both sides are highly consistent. He said that the CPC looks forward to seeing the two countries join hands on the road to modernisation, safeguarding the common interests of both countries and the vast number of developing countries, injecting positive energy into world peace and development, and jointly promoting the building of a community with a shared future for humanity. He called for making good use of multilateral platforms such as the BRICS political parties dialogue and the São Paulo Forum so as to raise strong voices in favour of making the international order more just and reasonable. (The São Paulo Forum is an important regional body that unites nearly all significant political forces of the left in south and Central America and the Caribbean.)

Gleisi Hoffmann, President of the PT, said that since the establishment of diplomatic relations between Brazil and China, great changes have taken place in both countries and the world. It is of great significance for the PT and the CPC to conduct exchanges and discussions on bilateral and major international issues. The world today is experiencing a multi-dimensional systemic crisis that affects every country and region in the world in different ways. Under the new circumstances, the PT is willing to, together with the CPC, strengthen exchanges and experiences of party building and state governance, strengthen unity and coordination, work together to respond to global challenges, and safeguard international fairness and justice.    

The following day, the PT delegation met with Li Xi, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Secretary of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection. Li said that China is willing to work with Brazil to promote friendly exchanges in various fields and at all levels, enhance political mutual trust, deepen strategic cooperation, and promote the upgrading of the China-Brazil comprehensive strategic partnership.

The following articles were originally published by the Xinhua News Agency and the IDCPC.

Xi, Lula send congratulatory letters to seminar involving CPC, Workers’ Party of Brazil

BEIJING, April 9 (Xinhua) — Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and Chinese president, and Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, honorary president of the Workers’ Party of Brazil (PT) and Brazilian president, have sent congratulatory letters separately to the 7th theory seminar of the CPC and the PT held in Beijing on Tuesday.

Continue reading CPC and Workers’ Party of Brazil hold theory seminar in Beijing

The Multipolar Challenge: Implications for dollar dominance and the shifting tides of US hegemony

We are very pleased to reprint the following article by Efe Can Gürcan, which was originally published in BRIQ Belt and Road Quarterly, Volume 5, Issue 1.

In his article, Dr. Gürcan, who is currently a Visiting Scholar at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and is a member of the FoSC Britain Committee, argues that the global political economy has long been characterised by the commanding presence of the US dollar – a linchpin that has steadfastly upheld US hegemony across decades. He further endeavours to illuminate the multifaceted interconnections between a multipolar world and the potential reconfiguration of the dollar’s global standing. His findings suggest that China emerges as the principal contender to US hegemony, spearheading initiatives aimed at dedollarisation, with the prevailing trajectory being towards asset diversification in a post-hegemonic context. Evident manifestations of such inclinations are China’s policies on RMB internationalisation, exemplified by the introduction of the CIPS (Cross-Border Interbank Payment System), UnionPay, and the Digital Yuan. These strategies complement the growing prevalence of bilateral trade in alternative currencies, a growing intention to conduct oil trading in non-dollar currencies, currency swap agreements, and the prospective advent of a BRICS currency. Institutionally, this shift is anchored in frameworks such as the New Development Bank, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), and the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The mounting view of dollar dominance as a manipulative instrument of US foreign policy, coupled with the perceived waning of US hegemony and diminishing confidence in the US dollar, impels developing nations to hasten their currency diversification pursuits. This momentum is observed particularly within the framework of South-South cooperation, with China’s proactive stance being a pivotal influence.

Developing his argument, Efe explains that this emergence of multiple power centres, each with its own economic and political clout, threatens to reshape the traditional dynamics of international economic relations, challenging the very sanctity of the dollar’s global supremacy.

He also considers it relevant to address the negative implications of dollarisation for the developing world. Adjustments in US monetary policy have frequently precipitated debt, exchange rate, and financial crises in various developing economies. Noteworthy instances include the Latin American debt crisis of the 1980s, the Asian financial crisis of the 1990s, and the 2018 exchange rate crises in Türkiye, Brazil, Argentina, and other economies, sparked by an increase in US dollar interest rates. Therefore, dollarisation is typically linked with high and unstable inflation, exchange rate fluctuations, and undisciplined monetary policy.

Global confidence in the US dollar has been foundational to its dominance. Such confidence has roots in the United States’ past contributions to global production, its unrivalled military prowess, and its capacity to maintain its currency’s purchasing power through technological advancements and a robust service sector. However, recent geopolitical shifts and the multipolarisation of world politics appear to be eroding this global confidence. China’s ascent as the leading producer and exporter of high-tech goods, combined with the repercussions of the 2007-2008 financial crisis and US military challenges in countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria, have raised questions about the dollar’s unassailable position.

He cites the work of Daniel McDowell to emphasise that sanctions are a crucial tool in the strategic use of the dollar to counter the emerging powers threatening US hegemony. Primary sanctions aim to directly isolate the targeted individual, company, or government from the dollar-based financial system. In turn, secondary sanctions are designed to exclude the target from global financial networks through the involvement of foreign financial institutions.

Turning to the trend towards dedollarisation, he explains that it emerged against the backdrop of the unprecedented rise of the Latin American left in the 2000s as an important catalyst in multipolarisation, which includes Lula’s Brazil, a leading BRICS+ member. Multipolarisation of the global political economy, he adds, goes hand in hand with the rise of South-South cooperation, embodied not only in the rise of the Latin American left and its social justice-oriented regionalism, but also in the proliferation of Eurasia’s security-oriented regionalism, including the SCO, the Eurasian Economic Union, the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, and other cooperation schemes such as the BRICS+, BRI, and the AIIB. These organisations hold the potential to serve as conduits for dedollarisation in forthcoming years.

Particularly significant are trends in the global energy market. If Saudi Arabia and potentially other Gulf countries start trading oil in yuan or other currencies, this would significantly erode the dollar’s dominant position in global energy markets. Additionally, the March 2023 agreement between Chinese and French energy companies to settle an LNG deal in yuan is also of historic importance. Given the magnitude and importance of energy deals, conducting transactions in currencies other than the dollar could set a precedent for future trade agreements. Equally important is China’s recent move to use the Shanghai Petroleum and Natural Gas Exchange as a platform for yuan settlements with Arab Gulf nations, a strategic effort to bypass the US dollar in energy trade. Given the vast volumes of oil and gas traded between the Gulf and China, this shift could have a significant impact on the demand for the US dollar in global energy markets. A similar situation goes for nuclear energy. The 2023 agreement between Bangladesh and Russia to use the Renminbi for the settlement of a nuclear plant transaction is yet another sign of countries seeking alternatives to the US dollar for significant infrastructure and development projects.

In this evolving landscape, therefore, China is seizing the opportunity to amplify its global financial footprint. In fact, China’s push to reform the dollar-centric global financial system began following the 1997 Asian financial crisis. Dai Xianglong, who was then the Governor of the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), expressed in 1999 that the instability caused by the dominant role of a few national currencies as international reserve currencies, as well as the system’s failure to address balance of payments imbalances, leads to international financial crises. In the wake of the 2007–2008 global financial crisis, Zhou Xiaochuan, Dai’s successor, emphasised the need to overhaul the international monetary system. He proposed an international reserve currency that would be independent of individual nations and identified the weakening dollar as a key factor in the global economic crisis.

China’s endeavours to reduce reliance on the US dollar and bolster the international stature of its currency, the RMB, have involved strategic maneuvers in global financial diplomacy. An integral part of this strategy has been the establishment of currency swap agreements with developing nations. By 2017, China had entered into swap agreements that amounted to more than $500 billion with 35 countries. Both the number of countries and amount of funds involved have continued to increase significantly.

China’s proactive steps towards dedollarisation and establishing the RMB as an international currency have manifested in various other innovative financial undertakings. Initiated in 2002, China’s UnionPay credit card system was instituted as a competitor to globally renowned credit card giants, Visa and MasterCard. By 2019, UnionPay’s ascendancy in the global credit card market was evident, as it held the lion’s share, accounting for 45% of credit cards in circulation. This significant development is not merely about market competition. It represents a strategic move to offer an alternative financial lifeline to nations, such as Russia, Iran, and Cuba, which, due to Western sanctions, find themselves estranged from the dominant international payment systems.

The advantages of the Digital Yuan are manifold. Beyond expediting financial transactions, the use of this blockchain-driven technology enhances China’s capability for comprehensive financial oversight and synchronisation – key attributes for maintaining a robust economy.

And the BRI stands out as one of China’s most ambitious global projects. While the initiative primarily focuses on infrastructural development and connectivity across continents, it also carries significant financial implications. By financing projects within the BRI framework, China can encourage or even mandate the use of yuan for transactional purposes, thereby promoting its global usage. If the BRI projects are primarily transacted in yuan, it could lead to an increased demand for the currency, thereby internationalising it and challenging the dominance of the US dollar.

Presently, dedollarisation represents a nascent trend, predominantly evident in developing nations seeking to diversify their monetary assets. In this context, the notion of “post-hegemony” encompasses not only the relative waning of US global influence and the rise of alternative power hubs, but also the burgeoning South-South collaboration.

Towards the conclusion of his article, Efe turns his attention specifically to Türkiye, which, he outlines, has articulated on multiple occasions its interest in deepening ties with non-Western multilateral organisations. Ankara has repeatedly signaled its intention to explore membership possibilities within the SCO and BRICS, two prominent platforms that present alternatives to the Western-centric global order. Furthermore, Türkiye’s engagement with the BRI is noteworthy. Within the BRI framework, Türkiye has championed its role in the Middle Corridor Initiative, serving as a critical bridge linking China to Europe, thereby reinforcing its geopolitical and geo-economic significance in Eurasia. Another testament to Türkiye’s eastward gravitation is its active engagement with the AIIB. As an institution primarily led by China, the AIIB has seen Türkiye emerge as one of its main beneficiaries, funneling considerable funds to support Ankara’s expansive infrastructure projects. Türkiye possesses a 2.54% voting share within the AIIB. Following India and Indonesia, Türkiye has emerged as the third-largest beneficiary of AIIB loans. As of 2019, Türkiye received 11% of the total loans extended by the AIIB. The majority of these funds are allocated to the energy sector. However, despite these efforts, and public statements opposing dollar dominance, Türkiye has achieved limited success in moving away from the dollar.

China’s efforts to promote the RMB on the international stage and challenge the hegemony of the US dollar, he concludes, are multifaceted. It is not just about the currency itself but is deeply tied to China’s broader strategic initiatives and global institutional leadership. In this context, the evolving financial landscape is a clear signal that the dominance of the US dollar is being actively challenged in the context of South-South cooperation, as a “post-hegemonic” form of international cooperation. Certainly, the perceived weaponisation of the dollar and the rise of the developing world as a site of resistance to US hegemony, is hastening this shift, as developing countries collaborate to develop and implement alternatives that insulate them from the economic risks of US policy decisions.

Efe Gürcan’s article is a serious study of a key issue in contemporary international political economy and one that deserves careful study.

The global political economy has long been characterized by the commanding presence of the U.S. dollar—a linchpin that has steadfastly upheld U.S. hegemony across decades. The dollar’s ascendancy, transcending mere economic value, has become emblematic of U.S. strategic influence in both the economic and geopolitical landscapes. However, as we witness the dawn of a new era marked by a multipolar global order, there is growing speculation about the potential waning of the dollar’s omnipotence. This emergence of multiple power centers, each with its own economic and political clout, threatens to reshape the traditional dynamics of international economic relations, challenging the very sanctity of the dollar’s global supremacy.

This article is anchored around the following pivotal inquiries: In what ways is burgeoning multipolarity in the global political economy reshaping perceptions and realities of the U.S. dollar’s dominance? How might a diminished dollar centrality impact the broader edifice of U.S. hegemony and the equilibrium of the global economic order? Which rising powers are at the forefront of this tectonic shift, and what strategic levers are they employing to influence the trajectory?

The present study endeavors to illuminate the multifaceted interconnections between a multipolar world and the potential reconfiguration of the dollar’s global standing. With this in mind, it also aims to elucidate the strategic implications for the United States and chart the evolving dynamics that will define the future global economic landscape. Using the method of Geopolitical Analysis Grid (GAG) (Cattaruzza, 2020; Cattaruzza & Limonier, 2019), moreover, this study systematically dissects the strategies and actions of pivotal emerging actors within the multipolar matrix. GAG facilitates a layered exploration of nation-states’ economic postures, geopolitical imperatives, and strategic alignments, all juxtaposed against their unique historical and socio-cultural backdrops. By assimilating these diverse insights, the present article uses this method to forge a holistic perspective on the emergent challenges and opportunities sculpting the global political economy. In this context, the article begins by establishing the conceptual and methodological framework that guides this research. The second and final section delves into an empirical analysis of multipolarization and de-dollarization.

Conceptual and Methodological Framework

To ensure a comprehensive and coherent analysis, it is imperative to commence by establishing a conceptual and methodological framework that will guide our examination of multipolarization and de-dollarization. The notion of U.S. hegemony is pivotal in framing this research. By “hegemony,” I refer to a scenario wherein a single state (or a group of states), “plays a predominant role in organizing, regulating, and stabilizing the global political economy (Du Boff, 2003, p. 1).” Notably, in the aftermath of World War II, U.S. imperialism emerged as the linchpin, driving the imperialist system and positioning itself at the epicenter of global hegemonic relations. It is essential here to clarify that my interpretation of “hegemony” does not necessarily require unanimous consent and unquestioned leadership. It rather encapsulates a nuanced interplay of consent and coercion in varying degrees, serving to relatively stabilize the international order and its alliance system led by a hegemonic power that pretends to act in the general interest, even in the face of discernible dissent (Gürcan, 2022b). For instance, the widely held conviction, prior to the 2000s, that the United States was unparalleled in global leadership—attributed to its economic superiority as a model nation, credibility in global governance, perceived military invulnerability, cultural appeal, and the dominance of the dollar—served as a quintessential illustration of U.S. hegemony.

Another essential term in this context is “multipolarization”, which describes the shift in the global balance of powers, as political, economic, and military clout becomes more evenly distributed, elevating the systemic importance of multiple states (Gürcan, 2019b). In turn, the term “dollar hegemony” describes a situation in which the U.S. dollar is widely adopted as the foremost instrument for international reserves, the main unit of account, and the primary means of payment, achieved through a combination of consensual and coercive measures. “Dollarization” is thereby the result of this hegemony, emerging from a process that entails the use of the U.S. dollar as a reserve of value, a medium of exchange, and a unit of account. Understood as such, one could identify three main types of dollarization. Financial dollarization pertains to the dollarization of assets and liabilities, whereas transaction dollarization relates to the payment system. Price dollarization concerns pricing units for goods and services (Vidal, et. al., 2022; Basosi, 2021; Levy-Yeyati, 2021).

Continue reading The Multipolar Challenge: Implications for dollar dominance and the shifting tides of US hegemony

Angolan President: We know what colonisation is and the Chinese are not colonising Africa but cooperating with us

Angolan President João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço paid a state visit to China from March 14-17 at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping. 

Whilst in China he gave an exclusive interview to He Yanke for the CGTN series Leaders Talk. 

He Yanke noted that Lourenço has visited China on numerous occasions since 2000, including as the Secretary General of the ruling Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), as the Special Envoy of his predecessor, and this is his third visit as head of state. 

Summing up his impressions from all these visits, Lourenço remarked that what impressed him most was that China was continually making progress and bringing surprises to the world. 

Noting that last year saw the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Angola, he described the relationship as exemplary. During very difficult times for his country, for example the period of post-war reconstruction, China had lent a helping hand. And the same was true, not only for his country but for the world, when humanity was suddenly faced with the Covid pandemic. 

Asked for his views on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), he recalled that China has provided Angola with strong financial support for infrastructure construction, including for roads, ports, airports, and hydropower plants, all of which are necessary for development. In his last few days in China, he had talked with 24 major companies, who had shown willingness to take risks and invest in his country.

Noting that China was building what will be Africa’s largest hydropower plant in Angola, and also training local personnel for the project, that will not only meet his country’s needs but also produce surplus electricity to be supplied to neighbouring southern African countries, Lourenço  was asked, given that Chinese companies are providing tens of thousands of jobs in Angola, how he would respond to the accusations levelled against China’s role in Africa from some quarters.

His answer was emphatic. Not just the Portuguese colonialists, he said, but the Europeans in general, including the British and French, had been in Africa for centuries. They had never engaged in the kind of infrastructure construction that we are seeing now. They are not just critics but slanderers acting out of malice. The facts are clear: China has not invaded any African country. The Chinese in Africa are not there for colonisation. We know what colonisation is and the Chinese are not colonising Africa but cooperating with us. China did not come to us fully armed but with funds and technology and a willingness to work with us.

The results are plain to see. In 2002 (when Angola’s long-running civil war finally ended), our country was in ruins. Thanks to the help from China, we now have land-based infrastructure connecting provinces and cities which didn’t exist before. 

The construction of roads, bridges, ports and railways was all done with the help of China. If these critics want to be part of the process, then they must act and do better than China. But we don’t believe they can.

Asked about President Xi Jinping’s three global initiatives, on development, security and civilisation, President Lourenço described the Chinese leader as a visionary and insightful statesman. Without peace and security, there can be no development – this is true both from the Angolan experience and also on a world scale.

The full interview with President Lourenço is embedded below.

Lavrov: China and Russia working to establish a fair multipolar world order

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov recently visited Beijing – a visit that is widely considered preparatory to a state visit by President Putin, which many reports suggest may be slated for May.

Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Lavrov on April 9. The Chinese leader asked Lavrov to convey sincere greetings to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Noting that this year marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries, Xi said China and Russia have embarked on a new path of harmonious coexistence and win-win cooperation between major countries and neighbours, which has benefited the two countries and their peoples and contributed wisdom and strength to international fairness and justice.

Xi stressed that China supports the Russian people in following a development path that suits their national conditions, and supports Russia in combating terrorism and maintaining social security and stability.

China always attaches great importance to the development of China-Russia relations and stands ready to strengthen bilateral communication with Russia and enhance multilateral strategic coordination in BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

He added that the two countries will show more responsibility, unite countries in the Global South in the spirit of equality, openness, transparency, and inclusiveness, promote the reform of the global governance system, and vigorously lead the building of a community with a shared future for humanity.

Lavrov conveyed President Putin’s cordial greetings and good wishes to President Xi. He said that under the strong leadership of President Xi, China has made achievements that have attracted global attention and provided important opportunities for other countries to achieve common development, which Russia deeply admires.

He added that Russia is willing to earnestly implement the important consensus reached by the two heads of state, strengthen bilateral and multilateral coordination, and work with other countries of the Global South to strengthen solidarity and cooperation in order to contribute to creating a more fair and just international order.

Lavrov also held talks with his Chinese counterpart, Foreign Minister Wang Yi the same day, with both sides expressing hope for strengthening practical cooperation in various fields.

They also had in-depth exchanges of view on the Ukraine issue, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the situation in the Asia-Pacific region and other international and regional issues of common concern.

At a joint press briefing after the talks, Wang said that in order to further consolidate and develop bilateral relations, China and Russia should follow five principles:

  • The two countries should always follow the strategic guidance of head-of-state diplomacy.
  • The two countries should always adhere to the principle of no-alliance, no-confrontation and no-targeting at any third party.
  • The two countries should always stay on the right course on major matters of principle. As permanent members of the UN Security Council and major emerging countries, China and Russia actively respond to the common aspirations and legitimate concerns of the people of all countries, advocate a new path of state-to-state relations featuring dialogue and partnership rather than confrontation and alliance, and actively promote the building of a community with a shared future for humanity.
  • The two countries should always pursue win-win results through cooperation. China and Russia will continue to advocate inclusive economic globalisation that benefits all, jointly oppose unilateralism and protectionism, and foster new drivers of global development and progress.
  • The two countries should always advocate an equal and orderly multipolar world. China and Russia support the central role of the United Nations in the global governance system and will further strengthen international coordination.

In his remarks, Minister Lavrov said: “The issues we are addressing in the economy, trade, investment, and innovative technology are directly related to the effort to establish a fair multipolar world order free from diktat, hegemony, and neo-colonial and colonial practices, which are being used to the utmost extent by the United States and the rest of the collective West that has bowed without question to Washington’s will.  

“China and Russia will continue  to defend the need to rectify this situation in international economic relations and to be committed to democratising these relations and returning to the principles that were proclaimed a while ago and consist in the requirement to respect the market processes, fair competition, inviolability of property, presumption of innocence, and much more, which the West is flouting in the grossest of manners by its practical steps expressed in imposing illegal sanctions on a number of states, including Russia.  But they are beginning to use the same policy with regard to the People’s Republic of China, including in a bid to restrict its economic and technological development capabilities, or, speaking plainly, to get rid of a rival.”

Noting the significance of the 75th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations, he continued:

“Minister Wang Yi mentioned that we discussed the forthcoming 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our countries. As a reminder, the Soviet Union was the first to recognise the People’s Republic of China the very next day it was established and helped it rebuild the nation. We agreed to prepare a series of commemorative events to mark this anniversary. We also explored potential initiatives for marking the upcoming 80th anniversary of victory over German Nazism and Japanese militarism next year. It’s important to recognise the pivotal role played by the peoples of the Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China in defeating Germany and militaristic Japan.”

Regarding the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, Lavrov said that: “In June, the People’s Republic of China will replace Kazakhstan as the SCO chair. There are promising opportunities to align the SCO agendas for advancing this vast Eurasian region with the BRICS programmes, which advocate similar ideals and principles on a global scale. This alignment serves to advance the interests of Asia, Africa, and Latin America, especially amid the declining Western globalisation model which has lost almost all of its credibility.

The Russian Foreign Minister also addressed the conflict in Ukraine: “We are grateful to our Chinese friends for their unbiased, balanced position and their readiness to play a positive role in the political and diplomatic settlement. The well-known ‘12 points’ that China put forward in 2023 clearly articulate the need, first, to take into account the root causes of this conflict, and second, in efforts to resolve it, to seek to eliminate these causes, first and foremost, in the context of ensuring equal and indivisible security, including in Europe and in the entire world. Chinese friends make it clear that it is necessary to take into account the legitimate concerns of all parties involved, first and foremost their security. In this context, my Chinese colleagues and I have confirmed the conclusion about the futility of any international efforts that do not take into account Russia’s position but completely ignore it and promote an absolutely empty, ultimatum-like ‘Zelensky’s peace formula,’ and are therefore completely detached from reality.

“With regard to the situation around Taiwan, which is an integral part of China, we are unanimous with Beijing in rejecting any interference from outside, as it is an internal affair of the People’s Republic of China. We talked about the situation on the Korean peninsula. We are interested in peace and stability in this region, just like our Chinese friends.”

In response to a question regarding the specific economic problems created by the unlawful policy of unilateral sanctions, Lavrov noted:

“We will address them within the framework of BRICS and the SCO. At a time when the United States and its satellites are capable of disrupting steady financing, logistics, transport and investment chains at any moment, it is time to think about how these issues, such as transition to national currencies, creating alternative payment platforms, including the decisions in this regard adopted within BRICS, and the activities of regional organisations such as the above-mentioned SCO and CELAC (the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States), can be considered and addressed by different entities.”

The following articles were originally published by the Xinhua News Agency and on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.

Xi meets Russian foreign minister

BEIJING, April 9 (Xinhua) — Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Beijing.

Continue reading Lavrov: China and Russia working to establish a fair multipolar world order

The global struggle against imperialism, for multipolarity, for peace and for socialism

The following text is based on a talk given by Friends of Socialist China co-editor Carlos Martinez at the Young Communist League of Britain’s Harry Pollitt School, held on 6-7 April 2024 in Manchester.

Participating in a panel Towards A Multipolar World: The End of U.S. Hegemony – alongside YCL International Officer Berkan Çelebi, Fiona Edwards of No Cold War Britain, and comrades from the Communist Party of China, Leninist Komsomol of the Russian Federation and Student Federation of India, Carlos focuses on the meaning of the term multipolarity, and particularly on distinguishing it from inter-imperialist rivalry.

He notes that, while some people point to the period leading up to World War 1 as being ‘multipolar’, the modern idea of multipolarity “isn’t simply about readjustments in the relations between the major powers, but it also includes the rise of the Global South – the increasing influence of China, of India, of Brazil, of regional organisations such as the African Union, ASEAN and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, as well as international organisations such as the G77 and the Non-Aligned Movement.”

Carlos continues:

Because this process of multipolarisation incorporates the rise of the Global South, and is being led to a significant degree by a socialist country, by which I mean China, it’s much more than just a change in cast; it’s a fundamental, a qualitative change.

He addresses the concern held by some on the left that, with the decline of the US, China will simply become the new imperialist power, noting that such an idea has no theoretical basis, and an observation of today’s reality and the state of international relations amply rebuts it.

Carlos concludes:

The most important dynamic of global politics today is this struggle between, on the one hand, an emerging multipolarity, and on the other, the attempts by the imperialists – led by the US – to preserve their hegemony. Clearly we can’t stand on the sidelines in this fight. Clearly we must do whatever we can in the struggle against imperialism, for multipolarity, for peace and for socialism. That global struggle is our struggle.

I’d like to use my few minutes today to go into a bit of depth on the subject of multipolarity.

This is a word that we hear increasingly often, but in my view it’s not something that’s particularly well understood.

In particular, in some parts of the left, multipolarity is thought to be a sort of synonym for inter-imperialist rivalry.

People understand that there’s a shift from a unipolar situation – the post-Soviet ‘end of history’ of the 1990s – and that increasingly there are multiple centres of power. Which of course is part of the definition of multipolarity.

But they point out: the world situation in 1914 was also ‘multipolar’. The US was a power, Britain was a power, France, Germany, Japan, Russia.

But there was nothing progressive or peaceful about that version of multipolarity; in fact it was precisely that intense, violent rivalry between competing imperialist powers that led to the terrible death and destruction of World War 1.

So what do we mean when we talk about multipolarity?

Jenny Clegg, who’s written an excellent book on the subject, called China’s Global Strategy: Towards a Multipolar World, defines it as a situation where there are “multiple centres of power, all with a certain capacity to influence world affairs, shaping a negotiated order.”

She adds a very important point that multipolarity isn’t simply about readjustments in the relations between the major powers, but it also includes the rise of the Global South – the increasing influence of China, of India, of Brazil, of regional organisations such as the African Union, ASEAN and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, as well as international organisations such as the G77 and the Non-Aligned Movement.

Jenny’s book was published in 2009. Since that time BRICS has become a very important body in the push towards multipolarisation, as has the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).

With multiple centres of power, you shift away from a situation where one country can impose its will on the others. Which means specifically, in our current context, that you undermine the US-led imperialist world system. You deprive the imperialist bloc of its power to determine the fate of the rest of the world.

This is of course profoundly important and welcome.

The US-led imperialist world system is what’s driving the genocide taking place this very moment in Gaza.

The US’s insistence on upholding and expanding its hegemony in Europe is what’s driving the conflict in Ukraine.

The genocidal war on, and occupation of, Iraq – in which an estimated one million civilians lost their lives, and which set the country’s development back by decades – took place in that same context.

The 20-year war on Afghanistan, which has brought relentless misery to that country.

NATO’s war of regime change against Libya, which transformed a prosperous and thriving country – the country with the highest human development index in Africa – into a failed state.

NATO’s war to destroy Yugoslavia.

The Western-backed Saudi war against Yemen, creating what until six months ago was the worst humanitarian disaster the world had witnessed this century.

Suffocating sanctions against Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Iran, Syria, the DPRK, Zimbabwe and other countries.

Structural adjustment programs, economic coercion, loans tied to privatisation and deregulation, taking advantage of the dollar’s role in the global economy in order to threaten, coerce and blackmail.

Such is the reality of the US-led imperialist world system. Such is the so-called “rules-based international order” that Biden and his ilk talk so often about.

Undermining and overcoming that situation clearly represents a historic victory for the peoples suffering under it.

And because this process of multipolarisation incorporates the rise of the Global South, and is being led to a significant degree by a socialist country, by which I mean China, it’s much more than just a change in cast; it’s a fundamental, a qualitative change.

It’s not Spanish and Portuguese domination making way for Dutch domination.

It’s not Dutch domination making way for British domination.

It’s not British domination making way for US domination.

It’s an end to the whole system of domination and hegemony. It’s an end to the dynamic whereby a small group of countries sets itself up as ‘rule makers’ and the remaining countries are ‘rule takers’.

It’s an end to the 500-year-old division of the world into oppressor and oppressed nations.

What about China?

Some people seem to worry that, with the decline of the US and the rise of China, China itself could emerge as a new imperialist power.

This is an idea that simply doesn’t hold up, at either a theoretical or practical level.

As of a century ago, the division of the world among the great powers is complete – as observed by Lenin in his famous pamphlet on imperialism. The only way for a new imperialist power to emerge is to displace existing ones, typically by means of war. But China’s record is remarkably peaceful.

Whereas the US maintains over 800 overseas military bases, spends over a trillion dollars annually on its military, and is in a state of more-or-less permanent war, China’s military hasn’t dropped a bomb in over four decades.

China’s per-capita military spending is around one-twentieth of that of the US, in spite of the fact that China is strategically far more vulnerable, and faces a long-running and escalating campaign of containment and encirclement.

China has peaceful development literally written into its constitution. China’s a nuclear power, but it maintains a strictly defensive nuclear posture: it has around 300 nuclear warheads, compared to the US’s 5,500, and it has had a policy of no-first use ever since its first successful nuclear test in 1964.

The Chinese leadership is clear and consistent. In the words of Xi Jinping, as it modernises and becomes more prosperous, “China will neither tread the old path of colonisation and plunder, nor the crooked path taken by some countries to seek hegemony once they grow strong.”

If you look at China’s role in the world – for example in relation to the crises in Gaza, Ukraine or Yemen – its approach is to settle difference through dialogue and to promote peace and cooperation.

China’s global strategy is profoundly different to that of the US or Britain. These countries are driven by a particular economic and political logic that China isn’t subject to.

The relentless drive for expansion, for domination of the world’s land, resources, labour and markets is a function of the expansionist logic of capitalism. A capitalist state represents a capitalist ruling class – the group of people that own and deploy capital, for whom “expand or die” is a basic law of economics.

As the New York Times journalist Thomas Friedman put it with such shocking honesty: “the hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist – McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas”.

But China’s development is driven by a socialist dynamic. Unlike the imperialist powers, China is not a state run by and for the capitalist class, and China’s rise isn’t built on colonialism or imperialism. It’s built on the basis of a workers’ state, the leadership of the Communist Party, public ownership, an economic strategy directed towards meeting the needs of the people, and of course the incredibly hard work of the Chinese people.

In fact, the existence of a socialist camp is a crucial difference between today’s emerging multipolarity and the system of international relations at the time of World War 1. The world changed forever in October 1917 – that date marks the beginning of the end of era of imperialism. Today Socialist China is the single most important factor driving this historic shift in international relations.

Multipolarity and the path to socialism

So, multipolarity means a framework for ending US hegemony, and for establishing a more democratic, more equal, more peaceful system of international relations, in which all countries enjoy sovereignty.

This is valuable on its own terms, but it also provides foundations for humanity’s global transition to socialism, because it means allowing the nations of the world to defend their sovereignty and choose their own development path.

As Samir Amin put it in his 2013 book Beyond US Hegemony – Assessing the Prospects for a Multipolar World, multipolarity “provides the framework for the possible and necessary overcoming of capitalism”.

New Cold War

Needless to say, what’s good for the socialist countries, for the global working class and oppressed nations, is not good for the imperialists.

So as multipolarity gains strength, so does the resistance to it from the Western ruling classes. Hence the New Cold War, hence the rejuvenation of NATO, hence the creation of AUKUS, hence the trade war and the semiconductor war. The US and its allies are doing everything they can to reverse the multipolar trajectory.

Indeed, the most important dynamic of global politics today is this struggle between, on the one hand, an emerging multipolarity, and on the other, the attempts by the imperialists – led by the US – to preserve their hegemony.

Clearly we can’t stand on the sidelines in this fight. Clearly we must do whatever we can in the struggle against imperialism, for multipolarity, for peace and for socialism. That global struggle is our struggle.

Xi Jinping: China and Vietnam are a like-minded pair bound by a common destiny

Following the recent China visit by Vietnamese Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son, Vuong Dinh Hue, Chairman of the National Assembly of Vietnam, paid an April 7-12 visit at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart, Zhao Leji, Chairman of the National People’s Congress (NPC) Standing Committee.

In his first official engagement, Hue met with Chinese President Xi Jinping on April 8.  While asking Vuong Dinh Hue to convey cordial greetings to Nguyen Phu Trong, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Central Committee, Xi also said that during his visit to Vietnam at the end of last year, he and Nguyen Phu Trong had jointly announced the building of a China-Vietnam community with a shared future that carries strategic significance, thereby opening a new chapter in bilateral ties.

Under the joint efforts by the two sides, the consensus reached by him and Nguyen Phu Trong is being implemented, Xi added.

He said the most distinctive feature of China-Vietnam relations is that the two sides are a like-minded pair bound by a common destiny, and “comrades-plus-brothers” is the most vivid portrayal of the traditional friendship between the two parties and two countries.

He urged joint efforts by the two sides to promote more achievements in building a China-Vietnam community with a shared future, better serve their respective modernisation, further benefit the two peoples, and make greater contributions to the global socialist cause.

Amid the profound and complex changes in the international and regional landscape, it serves the common interest of China and Vietnam to safeguard the socialist system and maintain national stability and development.

He urged the two sides to foster a strong sense of a China-Vietnam community with a shared future based on a high level of mutual trust, consolidate the foundation for the vision with high-quality cooperation, and promote this vision with a high degree of political wisdom.

This emphasis on the importance of good China-Vietnam relations not only from the bilateral point of view but also for the global cause of socialism overall, which was stressed throughout Hue’s visit, has acquired particular importance since President Xi paid a state visit to Vietnam last December.

Vuong Dinh Hue conveyed the cordial greetings and best wishes from Nguyen Phu Trong to Xi, noting that the CPV and the Vietnamese government highly appreciate China’s development and progress. China’s two parliamentary sessions held this year set the goals of developing new quality productive forces, among others, which are innovative moves of socialism and provide useful references for Vietnam, he added.

Vietnam regards China as its top strategic priority in its foreign relations, Hue said, adding that the Vietnamese side will follow relevant goals set by Nguyen Phu Trong and Xi to maintain close communications and cooperation with China at various levels and continue to consolidate a high level of political mutual trust.

Continue reading Xi Jinping: China and Vietnam are a like-minded pair bound by a common destiny

What the US really means by overcapacity

In the article below, prominent Marxist economist and International Manifesto Group convenor Radhika Desai responds to the media hype about China’s putative “overcapacity” in renewable energy production – a story that gathered steam during US energy secretary Janet Yellen’s recent visit to China, in which she accused China of “flooding” the world’s energy markets with cheap green energy.

Radhika starts off with the very reasonable point that, given the number of climate records that were broken in 2023, “one might think everyone would welcome China’s plentiful and cheap clean energy equipment”. China’s unparalleled investment in solar and wind energy have resulted in a dramatic fall in the cost of these technologies worldwide, thereby providing a powerful boost to humanity’s efforts to avoid climate catastrophe.

Furthermore, when it comes to “distorting markets” via subsidies, “the US offers billions in industrial subsidies and talks of reviving industrial policy. Moreover, it denies the simple fact that no country has industrialized without protecting itself, and using myriad forms of state direction, including subsidies.” Indeed China’s subsidies are perfectly consistent with WTO rules.

The article notes that declining conditions of the US working class are caused not by Chinese “overcapacity” but by “pro-corporate and pro-financialization neoliberal US policies” which have “deindustrialized the US, stagnated working class wages and, by shifting income and wealth from the ordinary people towards a tiny elite, generated vast inequality”.

Radhika concludes by observing that, as a socialist government committed to the welfare of its people, China “will not roll over and play dead when asked to harm its own economy, its own workers and the possibility of dealing with climate change, all only so that the interests of unproductive inefficient and financialized US corporations may be advanced”.

This article first appeared on CGTN.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen was recently in China to talk about its “clean energy overcapacity.” What can that possibly mean? At a time when the world needs more and cheaper clean energy equipment to deal with climate change, isn’t China helping the world by making this equipment more widely available at prices more of the world can afford? Surely, that is just what the world needs in 2024.

After all, 2023 broke so many climate records. It was the warmest year on record. There were record-breaking forest fires and floods. It was the hottest northern hemisphere summer. July 2023 was the hottest month on record. Considering these facts, one might think everyone would welcome China’s plentiful and cheap clean energy equipment.

Evidently, not. The U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen accused China of flooding the world with cheap clean energy exports, distorting global markets and harming workers. What explains this perversity?

The crux of the problem is the U.S.’s stance on climate change. It would be understandable if it supported solutions that were beneficial to it and its people. However, not only does the U.S. seek benefits not for its people but its corporations, it seeks solutions that not only benefit them but also put them in a dominant position.

Yellen kicked off her campaign against Chinese overcapacity at a solar energy plant in Georgia just days before she set foot in Beijing. She alleged that China had previously inflicted overcapacity in steel and aluminium and was now doing this in the clean energy sector, particular in solar panels, lithium-ion batteries and electric vehicles. “China’s overcapacity distorts global prices and production patterns and hurts American firms and workers,” she stated.

Capacity can only be excessive in relation to demand. When the problem is labelled overcapacity the ‘solution’ is to cut (other nations’) capacity. One could always see it as a problem of restricted demand, to be solved by expanding it. U.S. elites have long approached the crisis of the 1970s as one of over-capacity and sought to deal with the problem by restricting or even reducing industrial capacity in its rivals. It did this to Japan starting in the 1990s. It is currently doing this to Europe, forcing it to deindustrialize, allegedly in order to fight the hyped-up danger that Russia poses. And now, Yellen has brought this effort to China.

If China’s industrial capacity is deemed excessive, it must be restricted so that, when such equipment becomes scarce, U.S. products of lesser quality and higher cost will find markets. It also amounts to saying that the U.S. absolutely does not wish to increase the rest of the world’s capacity to demand more by increasing development and therefore demand there.

In speaking of China distorting markets, Yellen is saying that China captures markets through subsidies. This is, of course, particularly rich when the U.S. offers billions in industrial subsidies and talks of reviving industrial policy. Moreover, it denies the simple fact that no country has industrialized without protecting itself, and using myriad forms of state direction, including subsidies. This understanding defined the terms on which China entered the World Trade Organization in 2000. The U.S. was willing to grant these terms only because it assumed that China would be no more successful than other developing countries in using such provisions to industrialize and become a technological leader. It was wrong.

Finally, Yellen speaks of China harming U.S. workers. The sad, even macabre, reality is that U.S. workers have been harmed over all these neoliberal decades not by China but by the pro-corporate and pro-financialization neoliberal U.S. policies. They have deindustrialized the U.S., stagnated working class wages and, by shifting income and wealth from the ordinary people towards a tiny elite, generating vast inequality.

Sadly, for Yellen, China is neither Japan nor Europe but a socialist economy whose government is oriented towards advancing egalitarian development for its people. Yellen will find it willing to cooperate for the benefit of people and the planet. But it will not roll over and play dead when asked to harm its own economy, its own workers and the possibility of dealing with climate change, all only so that the interests of unproductive inefficient and financialized U.S. corporations may be advanced.

Left-wing political parties from Arab countries thank China for its support of Palestinian national rights

A delegation of left-wing political parties from Arab countries, led by Bassam Zakarneh, a member of the Revolutionary Council of Palestine’s Fatah, recently visited China.

Meeting the delegation on March 28, Li Mingxiang, Vice-Minister of the Communist Party of China’s International Department (IDCPC), said that China will continue to make unremitting efforts to promote a ceasefire in Gaza and achieve lasting peace and stability in the Middle East. The CPC is willing to deepen strategic communication and experience exchanges in state governance and administration with left-wing political parties in Arab countries, help build a China-Arab community with a shared future in the new era, and jointly advance the cause of human progress.  

Zakarneh thanked the Chinese side for its firm support for the Palestinian peoples’ just cause of regaining their legitimate national rights. Left-wing political parties in Arab countries are willing to strengthen exchanges with the CPC and learn from its successful experience in promoting theoretical innovation and Chinese modernisation.  

The below article was originally published on the website of the IDCPC.

Beijing, March 26th—Li Mingxiang, Vice-minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee, met here today with a delegation of left-wing political parties in Arab countries led by Bassam Zakarneh, Member of Fatah’s Revolutionary Council.  

Li spoke positively of relations between China and Arab countries. Combining the spirit of China’s “Two Sessions”, he elaborated on the bright prospect of Chinese modernization in an in-depth manner. Li said that the Chinese side is willing to work with the international community to continue to make unremitting efforts to promote a ceasefire in Gaza and achieve lasting peace and stability in the Middle East. The CPC is willing to deepen strategic communication and experience exchanges in state governance and administration with left-wing political parties in Arab countries, help build a China-Arab community with a shared future in the new era, and jointly advance the cause of human progress.  

Zakarneh said that China-Arab relations in the new era have achieved rapid development on the basis of traditional friendship, injecting confidence and impetus into regional and world peace, stability, development and prosperity, and thanked the Chinese side for its firm support for the Palestinian peoples’ just cause of regaining their legitimate national rights. Left-wing political parties in Arab countries are willing to strengthen exchanges with the CPC and learn from the CPC’s successful experience in promoting theoretical innovation and Chinese modernization. 

Spectre of Fu Manchu still influences UK’s modern Sinophobia

In the following brief article, Ding Gang, a senior editor with People’s Daily and senior fellow with the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, discusses the historical roots of the current wave of anti-China fearmongering in the British media and political establishment.

Ding Gang references the notorious fictional character Fu Manchu, invented by Sax Rohmer in the early 20th century. Fu Manchu was the personification of the “menace from the East”, masterminding a dangerous conspiracy to undermine Western civilisation. As China expert and peace activist Jenny Clegg has pointed out, the image of Fu Manchu came to “resonate into the deepest recesses of popular consciousness the world over”.

Ding Gang explains that the Fu Manchu character feeds into a racist ‘yellow-peril’ narrative, within which “East Asians pose a mortal threat to the Western world … reflecting and reinforcing Western anxieties about Asian influence and power.” This mentality continues to stand in the way of mutual understanding and cooperation between China and the West.

The author concludes:

Recognizing and addressing the historical roots of Western perceptions can lead to an informed, respectful and conducive approach to engaging with China for a constructive global future, fostering dialogue and exchanges between China and Britain to build mutual understanding and respect.

This article first appeared in Global Times on 27 March 2024.

The concepts in this article are explored further in a 2021 Society for Anglo-Chinese Understanding webinar Standing Up to Sinophobia – from Fu Manchu to Bat Soup!.

“China could use its electric cars to attack the West” was the title of a commentary I recently read on The Telegraph’s website. The article has even more eye-catching content: “Data espionage has become the signature weapon of the Chinese party state.”

Several other major British media outlets ran front-page headlines on Monday and Tuesday about the so-called Chinese cybersecurity threat, “identifying” China as a significant threat to the UK.

A wave of Sinophobia is sweeping across the country, reminding me of a name that Chinese people have long forgotten, Dr Fu Manchu.

Fu is a fictional character created by English author Sax Rohmer in the early 20th century. He first appeared in the 1913 novel The Mystery of Dr Fu Manchu. Fu is depicted as a brilliant but evil genius, embodying the Western archetype of the “yellow peril.” Over the years, the character has appeared in a series of Rohmer novels and numerous movies, television shows, radio dramas and comic books.

The term refers to the racist ideology that East Asians pose a mortal threat to the Western world. Fu and his adventures inspire and perpetuate fears of the “exotic” and “mysterious” Orient, reflecting and reinforcing Western anxieties about Asian influence and power. Fu’s opponents are usually the British and other Western protagonists who endeavor to thwart Fu’s evil schemes.

As we explore the complexities of modern-day Sinophobia in the UK, it is essential to recognize that the specter of Fu and the historical prejudices he represents still influence contemporary attitudes toward China and its people.

Few figures in the tapestry of British cultural history have cast such a long and dark shadow over perceptions of China as Fu.

While today’s Sinophobia is shaped by the realities of the geopolitical and economic challenges posed by a rising China, it cannot be fully understood without recognizing this historical legacy.

Fu is a creation of the early 20th-century imagination that has continued to resonate in the Western collective consciousness for over a century, regardless of Britain’s shift from a dominant empire to its current state as a declining Western power.

This is not to diminish the possibility of an old empire’s fears about an Eastern power, especially one it once colonized, but to emphasize how historical biases can affect our perceptions and responses today.

If we fail to scrutinize these issues, there will be a danger of worsening the conflict and misinterpreting China’s growth and its population in the future, which will pose a significant challenge to the Western world.

The narrative of China as an economic and security threat, engaging in unfair trade practices and threatening jobs in the West, may help politicians gain votes, but it hinders constructive engagement with China. Misunderstanding the country only fuels unfounded fears and narrow-mindedness.

It reveals, in one way or another, how complex, challenging, and long-term the process of Western acceptance of China’s rise has been. However, there is one thing that even these politicians who promote the “China threat” theory know only too well: China’s rise is unstoppable. What the West needs to do is to sit down with China and find the best way for common development.

In the face of modern Sinophobia, there are serious shortcomings in Western historical education and views on civilization. Their insistence on the superiority of Western civilization often causes them to project their current issues onto external changes, hindering their ability to effectively address such transformations.

As we move forward, let us remember that the shadows cast by figures like Fu Manchu are long. Still, through work and efforts that the sunlight of civilization’s evolution can shine.

Recognizing and addressing the historical roots of Western perceptions can lead to an informed, respectful and conducive approach to engaging with China for a constructive global future, fostering dialogue and exchanges between China and Britain to build mutual understanding and respect.

Xi Jinping holds talks with Indonesian president-elect Prabowo Subianto

Prabowo Subianto, President-elect of the Republic of Indonesia and Great Indonesia Movement Party General Chairman, paid a visit to China at the beginning of April. Prabowo was elected in February but will not assume office until October. Signifying his commitment to continue the friendly relations carefully nurtured by his outgoing predecessor President Joko Widodo, China was his first overseas destination since his election victory.

Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks with Prabowo on April 1. He congratulated Prabowo on winning the election and asked him to relay sincere greetings and best wishes to President Joko Widodo.

Recalling the rapidly developing and fruitful bilateral ties over the past decade under the guidance of the two heads of state, Xi said both sides have made the Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Railway an exemplar of high-quality bilateral cooperation and entered a new stage of building a community with a shared future.

Xi said China and Indonesia are both representatives of major developing countries and emerging markets. In the past, the two countries have supported each other in the cause of national independence and development, while in the future, the two countries should also unite in good faith to set an example of win-win cooperation and shared development and become a pacesetter for South-South cooperation.

He added that China is ready to strengthen cooperation with Indonesia on poverty reduction and eradication and provide support in this regard.

Noting that at present, momentous changes not seen in a century are accelerating across the world, Xi said the two sides should actively practice the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, vigorously promote the Bandung spirit of solidarity, friendship and cooperation, promote an equal and orderly multipolar world and inclusive economic globalisation that benefits all, strengthen multilateral coordination, and safeguard the common interests of developing countries. (The 1955 Bandung Afro-Asian Conference was hosted by Indonesia’s first President Sukarno and inspired the creation of the Non-Aligned Movement six years later.)

Prabowo conveyed President Joko Widodo’s sincere greetings to Xi, and said he is delighted to make China the first country he visits after being elected. China, he added, is a major influential country and the two countries always respect each other and treat each other as equals.

Prabowo noted that China is a strong partner of Indonesia and Chinese enterprises have participated in-depth in Indonesia’s economic growth and contributed to Indonesia’s national development in recent years.

He said that he supports the development of a closer relationship with China and will continue his country’s friendly policy toward China, adhere to independence and stick to the one-China policy that is always pursued by the Indonesian government.

He appreciated that China has always upheld fairness and justice in international affairs, especially on the Palestinian question, adding that Indonesia is willing to strengthen coordination and cooperation with China on international and regional affairs and make a greater contribution to South-South cooperation.

Continue reading Xi Jinping holds talks with Indonesian president-elect Prabowo Subianto

China’s assistance to Cuba a part of global opposition to hegemony

The following article from Global Times reports on the arrival of the first batch of emergency food aid from the Chinese government to Cuba, which assistance “demonstrates China’s unwavering support for Cuba”.

The report notes that the main causes of Cuba’s food shortages are the US’s criminal blockade, along with the sharp rise in global food prices resulting from NATO’s ongoing proxy war in Ukraine.

The author reiterates China’s firm stance against the blockade, which “severely harms the Cuban ordinary people’s right to survival and development,” and which is imposed because the “Cuban Government and people have never succumbed to the unilateralism and hegemony of the US, and despite the enormous pressure and losses caused by the embargo, Cuba has remained actively committed to promoting global solidarity and international cooperation.”

China’s aid, meanwhile, “is not merely a diplomatic gesture but a substantial contribution to Cuba’s healthcare and food security amid its economic struggles”, and more generally, China’s support for Cuba is “an essential part of the global opposition to hegemony and the effort to establish a fairer, more rational and more inclusive international order.”

On April 3, local time, the first batch of emergency food aid from the Chinese government arrived at José Martí International Airport in Havana. Luo Zhaohui, the director of the China International Development Cooperation Agency, stated at the airport, “The Chinese government is proud of and empathetic toward every progress and every challenge our Cuban friends face. Today’s assistance is a symbol of the friendliness of the Chinese people.”

China’s timely assistance once again clearly demonstrates its unwavering support for Cuba in overcoming food shortages and maintaining social stability.

Due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict and climate change, global food prices have sharply risen over the past two years, leading to severe food shortages in some countries and regions. In last year’s report, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres wrote, “Over 2.5 billion people are now facing severe hunger, with some on the brink of starvation. This is unacceptable.”

Cuba, reliant on food imports, has been doubly hit. Another blow comes from the long-standing sanctions imposed by the US, severely restricting Cuba’s foreign trade and regular access to external food supplies and corresponding agricultural equipment.

The embargo on Cuba is a remnant of the Cold War period and has garnered significant opposition. It has been widely criticized by the global community, as shown by yearly resolutions at the United Nations General Assembly urging its termination since 1992.

The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) cites staggering losses for Cuba, amounting to billions of dollars annually due to the embargo, which significantly hampers its agricultural productivity and poses a severe threat to food security. The US blockade severely harms the Cuban ordinary people’s right to survival and development.

China’s assistance to Cuba, including the delivery of significant amounts of medical equipment and food such as rice, highlights Beijing’s practical steps to support the Cuban people.

This aid is not merely a diplomatic gesture but a substantial contribution to Cuba’s healthcare and food security amid its economic struggles exacerbated by the embargo and support for the Cuban people’s fight against hegemony. In this context, China’s long-standing support for Cuba represents global public opinion against hegemonism.

The Cuban Government and people have never succumbed to the unilateralism and hegemony of the US, and despite the enormous pressure and losses caused by the embargo, Cuba has remained actively committed to promoting global solidarity and international cooperation. The latest news shows that the Cuban government has secured supply of key subsidized food rations by urgently coordinating resources from all sides, including foreign aid, etc. The Cuban government is also seeking to repair food shortages through efforts to revive the tourism industry, earn more foreign exchange and upgrade agricultural development.

The bilateral relations between China and Cuba strengthened under the “Belt and Road” initiative, have facilitated deepened economic and trade exchanges. This cooperation spans various sectors, bringing tangible benefits to the people of both nations and earning the appreciation of many Latin American countries, highlighting the potential of international solidarity in the face of unilateral sanctions.

As the political landscape in Latin America and the Caribbean undergoes a new round of profound adjustments, the narrative that views Latin America as the US “backyard” is outdated and undermines the sovereignty and autonomy of the countries within the region.

In recent years, Latin American countries like Brazil have been more actively supporting Cuba’s economic development and openly opposing the unilateral sanctions imposed by the US. This reflects the countries’ growing awareness of autonomous development within the region and promotes the growing consensus on achieving more equitable global governance and joint development.

The strengthening of Latin American countries’ awareness of autonomous development also makes Washington’s attempts to create rifts between China and Latin American countries and force these countries to choose sides increasingly difficult to advance.

China firmly supports the Cuban people’s just struggle to defend national sovereignty and oppose foreign interference and blockade. The wrongful practices of a few countries that arbitrarily impose unilateral sanctions cut off development aid, and freeze the legitimate assets of other countries must be corrected. China supports the termination of the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba.

China’s support and assistance to Cuba are an essential part of the global opposition to hegemony and the effort to establish a fairer, more rational and more inclusive international order.

Foreign ministers of Vietnam, Laos and Timor-Leste visit China

As part of an ongoing intensive diplomatic effort by China to consolidate and develop friendly relations with the member states of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and other countries in the region, China’s top diplomat, Foreign Minister Wang Yi hosted separate visits from the foreign ministers of Vietnam, Laos and Timor-Leste in the first week of April. The visits all took place in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region in southern China, bordering Vietnam, serving also to highlight the growing importance attached to subnational ties by China in its foreign policy.

Wang Yi met with his Vietnamese counterpart Bui Thanh Son on April 4. He noted that China-Vietnam relations achieved rapid development last year since the top leaders of the two parties jointly announced the building of a China-Vietnam community with a shared future that carries strategic significance. Quoting a line of poetry from the Vietnamese revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh, he said that this gave new meaning to the verse, “so profound is the friendship between Vietnam and China, because we are both comrades and brothers.”

Since the beginning of this year, he added, the top leaders of the two parties have exchanged new year greetings and maintained the momentum of high-level visits, while border provinces have pursued close cooperation and two-way personnel exchanges have achieved new breakthroughs.

China always regards Vietnam as a priority in neighbourhood diplomacy and stands ready to work with Vietnam to implement the consensus reached by the top leaders of the two parties, make solid plans for bilateral exchanges and cooperation, and jointly push forward the building of the China-Vietnam community with a shared future to a new level.

He suggested that the two sides should focus on such areas as strengthening high-level strategic communication, accelerating the alignment of development strategies, and continuing to expand cooperation in the economic and trade investment, digital economy, green development, new energy and key minerals.

Calling on both sides to jointly safeguard international equity and justice and continue to support each other on issues concerning major common interests, Wang said that it is necessary to be vigilant against engaging in camp confrontations in the region and cobbling together various “small circles” to undermine regional peace and stability.

Bui Thanh Son said that as a neighbour, comrade and brother, Vietnam supports China’s development and always regards China as the top priority and strategic choice of Vietnam’s foreign relations.

Vietnam is willing to maintain close coordination with China, promote economic and trade investment, deepen subnational cooperation, actively promote Vietnam-China friendship, build a Vietnam-China community with a shared future that bears strategic significance, and bring more benefits to the two peoples.

Vietnam adheres to the one-China principle, firmly supports China’s position on Taiwan and issues related to Xinjiang and Xizang [Tibet], opposes interference in other countries’ internal affairs under the pretext of human rights and democracy, and will strengthen multilateral coordination with China to safeguard common interests, he added.

The previous day, Bui Thanh Son had discussed regional cooperation with the Secretary of the Party Committee of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of China Liu Ning. He affirmed that the Vietnamese party and state always support and facilitate cooperation between Vietnamese localities and their Chinese counterparts, including Guangxi.

Vietnamese ministries, agencies and localities, and Guangxi should maintain and raise the efficiency of their existing cooperation mechanisms, step up friendship, conduct theory exchanges and share experience in Party building, social management and economic development.

Continue reading Foreign ministers of Vietnam, Laos and Timor-Leste visit China

China condemns Israel’s attack on Iranian consulate in Damascus

On April 1, the Zionist regime in Israel, out of its malign and desperate attempt to extend its genocidal war in Gaza into a fullscale regional conflagration, which it doubtlessly believes would secure the overt participation of US imperialism, flagrantly attacked the Iranian consulate, adjacent to the country’s embassy, in the Syrian capital Damascus. Some sixteen deaths were reported.

The next day, Chinese Ambassador Geng Shuang addressed a United Nations Security Council briefing on the attack. He stated:

“Yesterday, the Iranian diplomatic premises in Damascus, Syria were attacked by airstrikes, resulting in loss of several Iranian personnel and severe destruction to the premises. This is a grave violation of the UN Charter and international law and a breach of the sovereignty of both Syria and Iran. The attack is of an extremely vicious nature. China strongly condemns this attack.”

Ambassador Geng continued: “Twenty-five years ago, China’s Embassy in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was bombed by US-led NATO airstrikes, resulting in personnel casualties and the destruction of the Chinese diplomatic premises. We feel the grief and pain of the Iranian government and people and express to them our deepest sympathy and condolences.”

On May 7, 1999, during the imperialist war of aggression against Yugoslavia, US-led NATO forces bombed the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade. Three journalists from the Xinhua News Agency and the Guangming Daily were martyred and many more Chinese comrades were injured.

Relating the Damascus attack to Israel’s ongoing aggression in Gaza, Geng Shuang continued:

“Since the Gaza conflict broke out in October last year, we have witnessed attacks on homes, attacks on schools, attacks on hospitals, attacks on humanitarian facilities, attacks on UN agencies, and today, attacks on diplomatic premises. The red line of international law and the fundamental principles of international relations has been breached time and again. And the moral bottom line of human conscience has been crushed time and again. Such a tragedy must stop immediately. Last week, the Council adopted Resolution 2728 calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. We strongly call on the international community to work together to ensure this resolution is implemented so that the Muslim community will not have to celebrate the month of Ramadan in the midst of gunfire.”

He added that “the situation in the Middle East has become ever more precarious. Israel’s frequent cross-border strikes against targets in Syria and Lebanon are a serious violation of the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of the countries concerned, and have aggravated tensions throughout the region. Such provocative actions might trigger greater turmoils and jeopardise the security of the entire region. Such actions must stop immediately.”

In its letter to the UN Security Council, Iran stated that it, “reserves its legitimate and inherent right to respond decisively” to Israel’s murderous aggression.

We reprint below the full text of Ambassador Geng Shuang’s remarks. They were originally published on the website of China’s Permanent Mission to the UN. 

Madam President, 

At the outset, I would like to congratulate Malta for assuming the Presidency of the Council for this month. The Chinese delegation will fully cooperate with you and your colleagues. I also commend Japan for all its efforts serving as the President of the Council last month. 

Yesterday, the Iranian diplomatic premises in Damascus, Syria were attacked by airstrikes, resulting in loss of several Iranian personnel and severe destruction to the premises. This is a grave violation of the UN Charter and international law and a breach of the sovereignty of both Syria and Iran. The attack is of an extremely vicious nature. China strongly condemns this attack. 25 years ago, China’s Embassy in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was bombed by US-led NATO airstrikes, resulting in personnel casualties and the destruction of the Chinese diplomatic premises. We feel the grief and pain of the Iranian Government and people and express to them our deepest sympathy and condolences. 

In accordance with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and the universally recognized fundamental principles governing international relations, the safety and security of diplomatic missions shall be inviolable. To allow impunity for such reckless acts that lack any baseline would sent a seriously wrong signal and would encourage even more risky acts. We take note of the solemn protests and condemnation against Israel raised by Iran, Syria, and other Arab countries. We hope that Israel will respond to them. 

Madam President, 

Since the Gaza conflict broke out in October last year, we have witnessed attacks on homes, attacks on schools, attacks on hospitals, attacks on humanitarian facilities, attacks on UN agencies, and today, attacks on diplomatic premises. The red line of international law and the fundamental principles of international relations has been breached time and again. And the moral bottom line of human conscience has been crushed time and again. Such a tragedy must stop immediately. Last week, the Council adopted Resolution 2728 calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. We strongly call on the international community to work together to ensure this resolution is implemented so that the Muslim community will not have to celebrate the month of Ramadan in the midst of gunfire. 

At present, the ground situation in Gaza is deteriorating with rising spillover risks. And the situation in the Middle East has become ever more precarious. Israel’s frequent cross-border strikes against targets in Syria and Lebanon are a serious violation of the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of the countries concerned, and have aggravated tensions throughout the region. Such provocative actions might trigger greater turmoils and jeopardize the security of the entire region. Such actions must stop immediately. China calls on all parties, especially countries with important influence on Israel, to play a constructive role and to make concrete efforts to bring about an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, ease tensions, and restore peace and stability in the Middle East at an early date. 

Thank you, President.

Three-Body Problem: science fiction for China’s ‘New Era’?

The following article by David Peat – Iskra Books editorial board member and secretary of the Friends of Socialist China Britain Committee – discusses the new Netflix adaptation of Liu Cixin’s novel The Three-Body Problem, comparing it with the original book and with last year’s Chinese television adaptation by Tencent.

While describing the Netflix adaption as “admirable in many respects”, David considers that the series is somewhat let down by “poor scriptwriting and ham-fisted characterisation”. Compared to the Chinese adaptation, the Netflix version is too fast-paced, packing too much into a small number of episodes. “With more room to breathe, the novel and the Tencent series also bring out other elements” not covered by the Netflix series, including ecological themes.

David writes: “It has been noted that recent Western science fiction, particularly in cinema, is based either on simplified superhero narratives or extremely pessimistic dystopian/post-apocalypse scenarios, and this reflects a spiritual and ideological absence in late capitalist culture.” Liu Cixin, by contrast, “focuses on proactive and creative responses to long-standing and seemingly intractable problems affecting the whole of humanity.” As such, “Liu Cixin’s stories are fitting science fiction for China’s ‘New Era’ period of continuing socialist construction, undertaking (and more importantly achieving) its own enormously complex and profound projects of poverty elimination, green transformation, and high-quality development.”

David concludes that the Three-Body Problem has the potential to foster cultural understanding and people-to-people exchange between China and the West, “opening a door to the captivating world of Chinese science fiction for a global audience.”

This article contains no spoilers for any of Liu Cixin’s works or their adaptations.

The Three-Body Problem (三体), a science fiction novel released in 2006, counts as perhaps the major cultural ‘crossover’ success of China in the last decade. This was true even before the release of the new Netflix television adaptation of the book, released on the 21st of March 2024, and produced and written for the screen by Game of Thrones show creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, alongside Alexander Woo.

That the creators of arguably the largest television ‘phenomenon’ of recent years saw fit to choose Three-Body as their next project is testament to the cultural impact of this work within China and, increasingly, in the wider world. All the more interesting since the author Liu Cixin, a cultural icon in the PRC, refuses to repudiate his country’s revolutionary history, including its current governing party, the Communist Party of China. As such, he cannot easily be co-opted as a ‘dissident’, and those seeking to market and adapt his works in the West find themselves in the awkward position of having to promote an author who is proud of his country’s achievements and is able to critically engage with the historical path of the Chinese revolution in a productive way, avoiding what Xi Jinping refers to as “historical nihilism.”[1]

This article will look at the original book series, as well as a Chinese-made (Tencent) adaptation from 2023, and compare them with the recently released US-made (Netflix) adaptation. It will assess the relative merits of each version, different audience reactions to these series, as well as some wider considerations of the differences between contemporary Western and Chinese science fiction.

Three-Body Problem was published in China in 2006. The book is the first of a trilogy, with subsequent volumes titled The Dark Forest (黑暗森林) and Death’s End (死神永生), with the trilogy collectively known as Remembrance of Earth’s Past (地球往事). It achieved broad commercial and critical success domestically, with Liu’s works accounting for 2/3rds of the Chinese science fiction market, and abroad, with translations into more than 20 languages. In English, the first volume of the trilogy, translated by Ken Liu, received the coveted Hugo Award for ‘Best Novel’ in 2015, the first non-English speaking writer to do so. Liu Cixin’s dominance of modern Chinese science fiction can also be seen in the enormous domestic (and moderate international) success of film adaptations of his Wandering Earth novel, with China selecting the second instalment in this film series as its submission for this year’s Oscars.

The plot of the Remembrance of Earth’s Past series is difficult to summarise, especially when trying not to spoil anything. In general, the action initially takes place in a near-contemporary era with the deaths by suicide of various theoretical and applied physicists around the world, many of them leaving cryptic notes suggesting something along the lines of “Physics doesn’t exist.” The first book also jumps back to Mao-era China and follows Ye Wenjie, herself a gifted physicist, during the Cultural Revolution and subsequent work at a radio telescope base in Inner Mongolia. In the broadest possible strokes, the series can be considered an ‘alien contact’ story, but it also touches on themes such as ecology and human development, ‘game theory’, the capacity for ideological groups to form depending on external circumstances, global cooperation to overcome multi-generational problems, and high-level physics concepts.

The books were extremely well-received, with many praising their creative and inventive use of scientific concepts, enormously ambitious ‘high-concept’ action sequences, and philosophical themes. Equally, however, some readers critiqued the series, suggesting that these overwhelmingly abstract ‘ideas’ take centre stage, to the detriment of any focus on interpersonal drama and character development. As such, for years it was considered that the novels were ‘unfilmable’.

There had been a few abortive attempts at adapting the book series in China, in animation, or even video game form. Eventually, the Chinese company Tencent succeeded and released a 30-episode series in January 2023. This covers the events of the first novel, Three-Body Problem,,in exhaustive detail, and is considered a highly faithful adaptation, often with dialogue taken straight from the novel. On release, it was praised by fans of the book, with strong performances, excellent cinematography and impressive special effects, especially for its budget and the fact it was a Chinese television drama. However, there were also some criticisms, from both domestic and international audiences, which criticised the show’s irregular pacing, poor performances by non-Chinese actors, and the ‘old-fashioned’ CGI of the ‘video game’ section of the story.

Continue reading Three-Body Problem: science fiction for China’s ‘New Era’?

Wang Huning: China always regards the DPRK as a good comrade, good friend and good neighbour

In an important initiative highlighting the steadily growing solidarity, cooperation and coordination among the socialist countries in Asia, a delegation of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK), headed by Kim Song Nam, alternate member of the Politburo and Director of the International Department of the WPK Central Committee recently led a delegation to pay fraternal visits to China, Vietnam and Laos.

Leaving Pyongyang on March 21, Kim met the same day with Wang Huning, Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), who is also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee.

Wang said that that under the guidance of the top leaders of the two sides, China and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) have witnessed constant consolidation and development of their traditional friendship.

Noting that this year marks the 75th anniversary of diplomatic ties and is designated as the China-DPRK Friendship Year, Wang said China is willing to work with the DPRK to turn the important consensus reached by the top leaders into concrete actions advancing the friendship between the two sides, deepen collaboration, strengthen strategic communication, and jointly work for a peaceful and stable external environment.

Kim Song Nam referred to the fact that the DPRK-China relations have been steadily developing into genuine and solid comradely relations with socialism as their core under the direct concern of the leaders of the two parties of the DPRK and China.

He appreciated the epoch-making progress made by the CPC and the Chinese people in their efforts to implement the decisions of the 20th Party Congress under the leadership of General Secretary Xi Jinping this year, marking the 75th founding anniversary of the People’s Republic of China.

Wang Huning said that no matter how the international situation may change, the China-DPRK friendship, a strategic choice of both sides, will never waver, adding that China, which always regards the DPRK as a good comrade, good friend and good neighbour, will translate the important agreements of the top leaders of the two parties into substantial practice and thus provide greater happiness to the peoples of the two countries and contribute to the regional peace and stability.

The Chinese side will further preserve the true colours of the China-DPRK relations with socialism as their core by promoting mutual exchange, swapping experience and boosting unity and cooperation with the DPRK side, add vitality to the development of the China-DPRK relations and open up a new chapter this year, the year of friendship marking the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries, he stressed.

He expressed the Chinese side’s willingness to promote justice in the international community by jointly responding to the international and regional situation through strengthened strategic communication and tactical cooperation with the DPRK side.

Continue reading Wang Huning: China always regards the DPRK as a good comrade, good friend and good neighbour

Zimbabwean president meets visiting CPC delegation

A Communist Party of China (CPC) delegation, led by Jiang Xinzhi, Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and Deputy Head of the Organisation Department of the CPC Central Committee, recently visited Zimbabwe and South Africa.

On March 19 they met with Zimbabwean President and President of the ruling ZANU-PF party, Emmerson Mnangagwa. Jiang said that under the strategic guidance of Presidents Mnangagwa and Xi Jinping, China-Zimbabwe relations have become a model of China-Africa and South-South cooperation.

He added that the CPC stands ready to strengthen high-level exchanges with ZANU-PF, deepen exchanges of experience in party and state governance and promote further in-depth development of the China-Zimbabwe comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.

Mnangagwa asked Jiang to convey his good wishes to Xi and thanked China for supporting Zimbabwe’s national liberation and development.

The delegation continued their visit to South Africa where they had meetings with leaders of the African National Congress (ANC) and the South African Communist Party (SACP).

The following articles were originally published by the Xinhua News Agency and the People’s Daily. The People’s Daily article was published in Chinese. It has been machine translated and edited by us.

Zimbabwean president meets visiting CPC delegation

HARARE, March 20 (Xinhua) — Zimbabwean President and President of the ruling ZANU-PF party, Emmerson Mnangagwa, met with Jiang Xinzhi, vice chairman of the 14th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference here on Tuesday.

Jiang, also deputy head of the Organization Department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, conveyed cordial greetings from Chinese President Xi Jinping to Mnangagwa.

He said that under Xi’s and Mnangagwa’s strategic guidance, China-Zimbabwe relations have become a model of China-Africa and South-South cooperation.

Jiang said the CPC stands ready to strengthen high-level exchanges with ZANU-PF, deepen exchanges of experience in party and state governance and promote further in-depth development of the China-Zimbabwe comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.

Mnangagwa asked Jiang to convey his good wishes to Xi and thanked China for supporting Zimbabwe’s national liberation and development.

He said Zimbabwe is willing to strengthen inter-party exchanges and practical cooperation in various fields with China to jointly elevate bilateral relations to a new level.

At the invitation of ZANU-PF, Jiang led a CPC delegation visiting Zimbabwe from Monday to Wednesday. During the visit, Jiang also held talks with ZANU-PF National Chairperson Oppah Muchinguri Kashiri. 


Jiang Xinzhi leads a CPC delegation to visit South Africa

Johannesburg, March 24 (Reporter Yan Yunming) From March 20 to 24, at the invitation of the African National Congress (ANC) of South Africa, Jiang Xinzhi, Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and Deputy Head  of the Organisation Department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, led a CPC delegation to visit South Africa, where they met with the Deputy President of the African National Congress (ANC) Paul Mashatile, who is also Deputy President of the Republic of South Africa, the General Secretary of the ANC Fikile Mbalula, the General Secretary of the South African Communist Party (SACP) Solly Mapaila, and the Chairman of the ANC in the Western Cape Province Vuyiso JJ Tyhalisisu, to introduce Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era and the spirit of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China.

The two sides pledged to jointly implement the important consensus reached by President Xi Jinping and President Cyril Ramaphosa, deepen the exchange of experience in governing the party and the country, strengthen practical cooperation in various fields, and work together to build a high-level China-South Africa community with a shared future.

China and Nauru committed to promoting peace, development and stability in the Pacific

President of Nauru David Adeang paid a state visit to China at the invitation of his counterpart Xi Jinping from March 24-29. The visit comes soon after the tiny South Pacific island nation resumed diplomatic relations with China on January 24.

The two heads of state met on March 25 and Xi noted that Nauru’s political decision to adhere to the one-China principle and restore diplomatic ties with China in January is a move that conforms to the trend of history and the times.

Friendship, no matter its beginning, will have a bright future, and cooperation, regardless of scale, will be productive as long as it is sincere, Xi said.

He added that China-Nauru relations have opened a new chapter in history, and China is ready to work with Nauru to create a better future for relations between the two countries and bring more benefits to the two peoples.

China welcomes Nauru as another country to sign the Belt and Road cooperation document with China, adding that China is ready to expand practical cooperation with Nauru in trade, investment and infrastructure construction, and provide assistance to Nauru for its independent and sustainable development without political strings attached.

Stressing that treating others as equals is a defining feature of China’s diplomacy, Xi said China always believes that all countries, big or small, strong or weak, rich or poor, are equal members of the international community.

China has always been a member of the developing world, and China’s vote in the United Nations Security Council always belongs to the developing countries, Xi said.

Noting that China-Nauru relations are based on mutual respect, equality, mutual benefit and mutual support, Xi noted that China firmly supports Nauru in safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests, and in independently pursuing a development path suited to its national conditions.

Calling on the two sides to strengthen exchanges in education, culture, health, youth and other fields, Xi said China welcomes more young Nauruan people to study in China, and is willing to provide Nauru with assistance to address climate change within the framework of South-South cooperation.

China is willing to strengthen communication and coordination with Nauru in multilateral fields such as the United Nations and the Pacific Islands Forum, jointly advocate an equal and orderly multipolar world and inclusive economic globalisation that benefits all, and safeguard the common interests of developing countries, the Chinese president said.

Adeang said it is a great honour to be invited for a state visit to China and experience China’s long history, splendid culture and vibrant development.

Not long ago, Nauru decided to stand on the right side of history and resume diplomatic relations with China on the basis of recognising and adhering to the one-China principle, which is an important landmark in Nauru-China relations and opens a new chapter in Nauru’s national development and bilateral relations, he added.

He said Nauru highly appreciates China’s commitment to equality among all countries, no matter big or small, and is willing to abide by the one-China principle, and continuously deepen cooperation with China.

As the world today faces many global challenges, common progress and prosperity can only be achieved through solidarity and cooperation, Adeang said, noting that the series of global initiatives put forward by President Xi Jinping is of great significance.

In a joint statement issued by the two countries, “the Nauruan side spoke highly of China’s great development achievements in the new era under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, and believes that the Chinese path to modernisation offers new options and solutions to fellow developing countries seeking independent development. Nauru welcomes and supports the vision of building a community with a shared future for humanity and the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative and the Global Civilisation Initiative set forth by President Xi Jinping.”

The two sides agreed that all countries, regardless of size, strength and wealth, are equals. The Chinese side firmly supports Nauru in upholding its sovereignty, security and development interests, and in independently choosing a development path suited to its national conditions.

The Chinese side welcomes and supports Nauru in joining the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) at an early date. The two sides agreed to expand exchanges and cooperation in such areas as culture, education, health, sport, tourism, youth, media, and human resources, and take policy measures to promote their cross-border travel.

They agreed that climate change is a global challenge that requires all countries to work together to address it under the framework of multilateralism and following the principles of equity, common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. The two sides will jointly promote the full and effective implementation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and its Paris Agreement.

In a particularly significant section, China and Nauru clearly addressed the twin issues of Japan’s discharge of waste water from the stricken Fukushima nuclear reactor and Britain’s planned provision of nuclear-powered submarines to Australia under the AUKUS agreement that also includes the United States, stating:

“The two sides are committed to working with all sides to promote peace, development and stability in the Pacific Islands region. The two sides firmly uphold the international nuclear non-proliferation regime with the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons as the cornerstone and the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone Treaty, and call on relevant countries to fulfil international obligations and prudently handle the discharge of nuclear contaminated water, cooperation on nuclear-powered submarines, etc.”

It added: “The Chinese side reiterated its active support for the Pacific Island Countries in implementing the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent. The two sides agreed to strengthen cooperation under multilateral mechanisms including the China-Pacific Island Countries Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and the China-Pacific Island Countries Economic Development and Cooperation Forum and under multilateral cooperation platforms for emergency supplies, climate response, poverty alleviation and development, disaster prevention and mitigation, Juncao technology [a Chinese innovation that allows for the breeding of a hybrid grass from fungi and herbaceous plants, thereby addressing issues of poverty, soil erosion and desertification] and agriculture, and work together for a closer community with a shared future between China and Pacific Island Countries.”

Continue reading China and Nauru committed to promoting peace, development and stability in the Pacific

Nepal’s Minister for Foreign Affairs meets with Chinese leaders

Narayan Kaji Shrestha, Nepal’s newly appointed Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, paid an official visit to China from March 25-April 1 at the invitation of Foreign Minister Wang Yi. 

On the first day of his visit, Shrestha met with Wang Huning, Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).

Noting that the leaders of China and Nepal reached an important consensus on developing bilateral ties in their meeting last year, Wang, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, called on the two sides to intensify political support, promote the high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, and enhance people-to-people connectivity.

China is ready to work with Nepal to faithfully implement the important consensus reached by the two countries’ leaders, advance the China-Nepal strategic partnership of cooperation featuring ever-lasting friendship for development and prosperity, and push for an even closer community of shared future between China and Nepal, Wang said.

The same day, Shrestha, who is also the Senior Vice-Chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre), met with Sun Haiyan, Vice-Minister of the International Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee (IDCPC).

She said that the CPC is ready to, together with the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre), strengthen inter-party exchanges, deepen mutual learning in state governance and administration, and boost China-Nepal relations and cooperation for in depth development.  

Shrestha spoke highly of the relations between the two countries and the two parties. He said, the Nepali left-wing coalition government regards the Chinese side as an important partner, firmly adheres to the one-China principle, and will never allow any force to use Nepal’s territory to engage in any anti-China activities.

The following day, he met with Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who said that China has always placed Nepal in an important position in its neighbourhood diplomacy.

China is ready to work with Nepal to promote the high-quality Belt and Road cooperation and advance the China-Nepal strategic partnership of cooperation featuring ever-lasting friendship for development and prosperity to a new and higher level, he added.

In response to an invitation, Wang reportedly said that he would visit Nepal within this year.

Shrestha said that the new government of Nepal attaches great importance to relations with China. Nepal is willing to work with China to advance the Belt and Road cooperation and has decided to join the Group of Friends of the Global Development Initiative.

Shrestha’s visit comes in the wake of some important political changes in Nepal. On March 4, Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal (more commonly known as Prachanda), who leads the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre), broke his coalition agreement with the Nepali Congress party, in favour of establishing a five-party left-wing coalition government, primarily with the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist) (CPNUML), along with the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Socialist) and two non-communist parties, the Janata Samajbadi Party and the Rastriya Swantra Party. The new government won a vote of confidence in the Nepalese parliament on March 13. 

In his new post as Foreign Minister, Shrestha chose China for his first international visit, just three weeks after taking office. Besides Beijing, he visited the municipality of Chongqing, Sichuan province and the Xizang (Tibet) Autonomous Region. These areas in the west of the country play the main role in China’s relations with Nepal at the subnational level.

The following articles were originally published by the Xinhua News Agency and on the IDCPC website.

China’s top political advisor meets Nepal’s FM

BEIJING, March 25 (Xinhua) — Wang Huning, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), met on Monday with Narayan Kaji Shrestha, Nepal’s deputy prime minister and foreign minister.

Noting that the leaders of China and Nepal reached important consensus on developing bilateral ties in their meeting last year, Wang, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, called on the two sides to intensify political support, promote the high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, and enhance people-to-people connectivity.

China is ready to work with Nepal to faithfully implement the important consensus reached by the two countries’ leaders, advance the China-Nepal strategic partnership of cooperation featuring ever-lasting friendship for development and prosperity, and push for an even closer community of shared future between China and Nepal, Wang said.

“The CPPCC is willing to make positive contributions to the above-mentioned endeavors,” said Wang.

Shrestha said Nepal firmly adheres to the one-China principle, adding that Nepal expects enhanced communication and cooperation with China in various fields to better benefit the two peoples.


Sun Haiyan Meets with Narayan Kaji Shrestha, Senior Vice Chairman of Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Center), Deputy Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Nepal

Beijing, March 25th (IDCPC) — Sun Haiyan, Vice-minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee (IDCPC), met here today on the afternoon with Narayan Kaji Shrestha, Senior Vice Chairman of Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Center), Deputy Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Nepal. 

Sun congratulated Shrestha on his assumption of the new post. She said, the Chinese side is willing to work with the Nepali side to jointly implement the important consensus reached by the leaders of the two countries on the development of China-Nepal relations, accelerate practical cooperation, and support each other on issues involving respective core interests and major concerns. The CPC is ready to, together with the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Center), strengthen inter-party exchanges, deepen mutual learning in state governance and administration, and boost China-Nepal relations and cooperation for in depth development.  

Shrestha spoke highly of the relations between the two countries and the two Parties. He said, the Nepali left-wing coalition government regards the Chinese side as an important partner, firmly adheres to the one-China principle, and will never allow any force to use Nepal’s territory to engage in any anti-China activities. The Nepali side expects to work with the Chinese side to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in various fields, learn governance experience from the CPC, promote high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, and elevate Nepal-China relations to a new height. 


Continue reading Nepal’s Minister for Foreign Affairs meets with Chinese leaders