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Premier Li Keqiang Meets the Press: Full Transcript of Questions and Answers

China Daily | Updated: 2020-05-30 09:31
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Premier Li Keqiang meets the press after the closing of the third session of the 13th National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, May 28, 2020. Premier Li took questions from Chinese and foreign reporters via video link. [Photo/Xinhua]

NBC News: The United States continues to blame China for the global pandemic. There's more and more talk of a cold war between the US and China. At the same time, Chinese and American officials talk of creating favorable conditions for the phase one trade deal that could help stabilize the relationship. Are you still confident that more economic reforms and concessions of China can adequately address America's concerns, given that China's economy has been weakened? Or if the efforts for cooperation fail, can China's economy withstand the threat of a "cold war" and "decoupling"?

Premier Li: It is true that at the moment, China-US relations have encountered some new problems and challenges. This is a very important bilateral relationship. Both countries are permanent members of the UN Security Council. There are many areas where the two countries can and should work with each other in tackling both traditional and non-traditional challenges. There are also extensive exchanges between the two countries in the economic, trade, scientific, technological, cultural and other fields. So it is fair to say that there is extensive common interest between China and the United States. Both countries stand to gain from cooperation and lose from confrontation. Getting Sino-US relationship right is in the interest of people of both countries and the whole world. Given the importance of this relationship, the problems that occurred in this relationship have been a cause for concern for the international community. As for a cold war, you know that we have all along rejected the "cold war" mentality. And "decoupling" between major economies will do neither side any good. It is also harmful to the world. I believe we should continue to work together to follow through on the important consensus reached between our two presidents and work jointly to foster a Sino-US relationship based on coordination, cooperation and stability.

The economies of our two countries have become closely interconnected. Our economic and trade ties have come a long way, and both sides have benefited tremendously. Just a few days ago, an American high-tech firm announced the launch of an investment project in Wuhan. I shouldn't do any commercial promotion for any company, but I highly appreciate this move and sent my message of congratulations to mark the occasion. I believe this example shows that the business communities of our two countries need each other, and our business cooperation can be of mutual benefit.

I believe the economic cooperation and trade between our two countries should follow commercial principles. We should leave the decisions to the market and to the business leaders. The job of the government is to establish platforms for the business communities of the two countries. China and the United States are the world's largest developing and developed countries respectively. Given the differences in our social systems, cultural heritage and historical backgrounds, some disagreements and even frictions may be unavoidable. What's important is how we manage them. The relationship has been moving forward amid twists and turns in the past several decades, featuring both growing cooperation and some bumps along the way. Indeed, this is a complex relationship. We must use our wisdom to expand common interests and manage differences and disagreements. In a word, I believe that the two countries should develop a relationship on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, respect each other's core interests and major concerns, and embrace cooperation. That will be conducive to the interests of both countries and the world.

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