Chinese leaders on China-ASEAN relationsUpdated: 2013-10-08 16:46
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, Brunei - The 16th China-ASEAN Summit is set to open Wednesday in Brunei's capital of Bandar Seri Begawan, which is expected to further boost bilateral relations in all areas.
This year marks the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the strategic partnership between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Over the past decade, Chinese leaders have attached great importance to developing relations with the regional bloc.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said last Thursday in an address to Indonesian lawmakers that China wants to build closer ties and a community of common destiny with members of the ASEAN.
Xi said China is willing to work with ASEAN countries to ensure that China and ASEAN are good neighbors, friends and partners, and jointly build a more closely-knit China-ASEAN community of common destiny.
The China-ASEAN community of shared destiny is closely liked with the ASEAN and East Asia community, said Xi, urging both sides to bring out their respective strengths to realize diversity, harmony, inclusiveness and common progress.
With regard to differences and disputes between China and some Southeast Asian nations on territorial sovereignty and maritime rights in the South China Sea, Xi said that peaceful solutions should be sought, and differences and disputes should be properly handled through equal-footed dialogue and friendly consultation in the overall interests of bilateral ties and regional stability.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, who is to attend the upcoming summit, said in a keynote speech at the 10th China-ASEAN Expo and the China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit on September 3 that China-ASEAN relations must be long-run and friendly, cooperative and mutually beneficial, and fully embody the importance of the strategic partnership between the two sides.
The premier also said that China will keep supporting the development of ASEAN, the establishment of the ASEAN community, as well as upholding the dominant role of ASEAN in East Asia cooperation.
"We had the capabilities to create a 'golden decade' in the past, we also have the power to create a 'diamond decade' in the future," said the premier.
As to the South China Sea disputes, the premier said that China has always firmly held that the immediate disputing parties should seek sound solutions through friendly negotiations on the basis of respecting historical facts and international laws.
He said the Chinese government is one of accountability, and is willing to seek sound solutions through friendly negotiations, adding the Chinese side maintains that the South China Sea disputes are not an issue between China and the ASEAN, and they should not and will not affect the overall China-ASEAN cooperation.
On September 7, 2012, then Chinese President Hu Jintao, when meeting with Brunei's Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah in Vladivostok, Russia, said China supports ASEAN's leading role in East Asia cooperation and supports the ASEAN integration process.
He said the two sides have maintained good coordination and cooperation within the framework of the China ASEAN cooperation framework.
During his visit to Indonesia in April 2005, Hu said China has all along valued its relations with ASEAN and added that China will stay on the path of peaceful development, follow the principle of developing friendship and partnerships with neighbors and the policy of working for an amicable, tranquil and prosperous neighborhood so as to make its due contribution to greater peace, stability and prosperity in the region and the world at large.
Former Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said on November 19, 2012 in Phnom Penh at the 15th China-ASEAN Summit that mutual respect and mutual trust are the precondition for further cooperation between China and the ASEAN, adding China is willing to increase dialogue and enhance cooperation with ASEAN in security and strategy.
On November 18, 2011, Wen said at the 14th China-ASEAN Summit held in Bali, Indonesia that China and ASEAN have abided by the principle of mutual respect and non-interference in each other's internal affairs and worked to strengthen political mutual trust.
He said China respects ASEAN countries' independent choice of path of development and values, supports ASEAN in handling disputes in its own way and opposes outside interference in ASEAN' s internal affairs.
On October 30, 2006, addressing the summit marking the 15th anniversary of the establishment of China-ASEAN dialogue, Wen said that peaceful development is the prerequisite for the growth of China-ASEAN relations.
He also pointed out that equality and mutual trust are the foundation of China-ASEAN relations, while win-win cooperation is the goal for China-ASEAN relations. He added that people's support is the driving force behind China-ASEAN relations.