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International perspectives on Xi's governance of China

By Song Jingyi | | Updated: 2017-09-21 08:47

International perspectives on Xi's governance of China

Bruce W. McConnell, global vice-president at EastWest Institute, gives a speech themed National Leadership in the Twenty-First Century at UCCA, 798 art zone in Beijing on Sept 16. [Photo provided to]

Over the past several years, China has taken excellent steps for other nations to study. For example, in climate change. In May 2017, China joined France, India, and other important powers in reaffirming its commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement even as US President Donald Trump threatened to pull the US out. While all countries, including China, must actually do much more to limit carbon emissions than the Paris deal requires, the agreement is an important baseline, and China is leading by example.

On the subject of trade, in January at the World Economic Forum, President Xi Jinping said that China would keep its borders open, stressing that there would be no winners from a trade war. Here is what he said. "Pursuing protectionism is like locking oneself in a dark room. Wind and rain may be kept outside, but so is light and air." And we must all work to ensure that our two nations continue to enjoy a free trading partnership.

On the critical question of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea(DPRK), China is among the most vulnerable nations. If the political system there collapses, China will receive a flood of refugees from its neighbor. The same is true if an armed conflict occurs. China is cooperating well with other concerned powers, attempting to find a peaceful resolution. We need to find ways to bring the DPRK to the negotiating table, not by dictating the terms of the agreement, but by finding a way for them to be successful too.

These examples testify to the evolution of China into becoming a new type of major power - one that takes international responsibilities very seriously.

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