January 30, 2023 Press Conference Held by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mao Ning


CCTV: The seventh summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) was recently held in Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. President Xi Jinping delivered a video speech at the summit. Can you give us more information?

Mao Ning: On January 25, Beijing Time, the seventh summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) was held in Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. At the invitation of Argentinian President Alberto Fernández, CELAC’s rotating president, President Xi Jinping delivered a video speech at the summit. The information concerned was promptly published on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

I would like to point out that President Xi Jinping’s video speech at the invitational summit shows that China has always supported the Latin American and Caribbean regional integration process and attaches great importance to its relations with CELAC. This was warmly welcomed by countries in the region. Guided by the principles set out in the speech, we stand ready to work with CELAC countries to constantly strengthen the construction of the China-CELAC Forum, take to new heights the China-CELAC relationship characterized by equality, mutual benefits , innovation, openness and benefit to the people, and build a China-CELAC community with a shared future.

China Daily: The US State Department spokesperson has repeatedly mentioned Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s upcoming visit to China, saying his team will discuss with China how to responsibly handle competition and to intensify cooperation on transnational challenges, and that she will also express concerns on issues related to Taiwan, fentanyl, Ukraine and the Korean peninsula. What is China’s comment on this?

Mao Ning: I would like to stress that in developing its relations with the United States, China follows the three principles proposed by President Xi Jinping, namely mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation, and at the same time remains determined to preserve our sovereignty, security and development interests.

China does not shy away from competition and is not afraid of it, but we are against defining the entire China-US relationship by competition alone and using competition as a pretext to contain and suppress others. . We stand ready to establish bilateral and multilateral communication and cooperation with the United States on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, while we must remind the United States that it cannot demand communication and cooperation while continuing to interfere in China’s internal affairs and harm its interests.

The Taiwan issue is at the heart of China’s core interests. It is the political foundation of China-US relations and the number one red line between China and the United States. At no time should the United States seek to cross this red line.

When it comes to international counter-narcotics efforts, China is the first country in the world to officially categorize fentanyl-related substances. China has taken an active part in international cooperation in the fight against narcotics within the framework of the United Nations drug control conventions. China’s counter-narcotics capability, however, has been seriously hampered by sanctions imposed by the United States on relevant Chinese institutions. We strongly oppose these sanctions and urge the United States to reflect on its insufficient counter-narcotics efforts instead of deflecting blame.

Regarding Ukraine and the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula, China is committed to seeking a political settlement and promoting peace talks. We are opposed to words and actions that “pour oil on the fire” and intensify conflicts. Our policy and position can stand the test of history and facts.

The future of our two peoples and even the future of the whole world depends on healthy and stable China-US relations. We hope that the United States will walk in the same direction as China, adhere to the motto of dialogue rather than confrontation and zero-sum competition, and put into practice the important consensus reached by the two leaders. state in order to bring bilateral relations back to the path of healthy and stable development.

Xinhua News Agency: We have noticed that the number of Chinese tourists traveling outside China during this year’s Spring Festival holiday has increased significantly, and many countries have warmly welcomed Chinese tourists, believing that they will greatly contribute to the revival of tourism and the economic recovery of the countries. What is your comment on this?

Mao Ning: According to statistics, inbound and outbound travel during the Spring Festival holiday jumped 120.5% from last year to over 2.87 million, an average of 410,000 people per day. Overall outbound travel orders during the Chinese New Year period soared 640% and outbound air ticket bookings increased more than four times year-on-year. Countries have warmly welcomed Chinese tourists. Popular ski resort Jungfrau, Switzerland, has installed Chinese lanterns and Year of the Rabbit decorations at the cable car terminal. Bali airport in Indonesia welcomed Chinese tourists with the traditional Chinese lion dance on the first day of the Chinese New Year. A grand water gate ceremony was held at Velena International Airport in the Maldives to welcome Chinese tourists. Thailand’s deputy prime minister greeted Chinese tourists at the airport. The Philippine Minister of Tourism expressed his gratitude to China for identifying the Philippines as one of the first countries where group travel is allowed and said the Philippines is open and ready to welcome China’s friends.

During this Spring Festival, the world has seen a China full of vitality and joy, as more than 300 million domestic trips have been made in the country and the ticket office during the Spring Festival has sold 129 million tickets. tickets for a total of 6.7 billion yuan. This boom in tourism and consumption testifies to the Chinese people’s passion for life and their confidence in China’s development, and gives the world a sense of the strong momentum of China’s economic recovery and the importance of a strong Chinese economy for the world.

RIA Novosti: The first question: According to Russian media, State Councilor Wang Yi will pay an official visit to Russia on February 20. Can the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirm this? The second question: Kim Yo-jong, younger sister of North Korea’s supreme leader Kim Jong-un and deputy director of the department of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of North Korea, said that the United States had stepped up conflicts by supplying arms to Ukraine and that North Korea would always be on the side of the Russian army and people. What is China’s comment on this?

Mao Ning: Regarding your first question, I am not aware of the visit you mentioned at this time. China and Russia are comprehensive strategic coordination partners. We maintain close contacts at all levels.

As for your second question, China’s position on the Ukraine issue is clear and consistent. We will continue to engage actively to promote peace talks and to defuse tensions.

Yonhap News Agency: At present, South Korea and China still maintain mutual visa restrictions for travelers. What is China’s view on this? Are the two governments in communication on this issue? Does China plan to discuss with South Korea on this subject?

Mao Ning: In January this year, some countries announced interim anti-epidemic measures for travelers from China. China has taken corresponding measures in response to different situations based on the principle of reciprocity. We regret that South Korea announced the extension of the visa suspension for Chinese citizens, which is not conducive to the flow of personnel as well as exchanges and cooperation between the two countries. We hope South Korea will lift this unreasonable restriction as soon as possible. Based on this, China is ready to take corresponding measures to facilitate personnel exchanges between the two countries.

CCTV: It has been reported that according to sources, the US government has obtained evidence that some Chinese state-owned companies may be providing non-lethal economic and military assistance to Russia’s war effort in Ukraine. The US government questioned the Chinese government whether the latter was aware of this and warned China of the implications of providing material support to Russia. What is your comment on this?

Mao Ning: China’s position on the Ukraine issue has been objective and fair. We have always been on the side of peace and have played a constructive role in advancing the political settlement of the Ukrainian crisis. We have never been spectators, we will never add fuel to the fire, and we will not take advantage of the opportunity to generate gains. The United States is the origin of the Ukrainian crisis and the main engine fueling it. They kept sending heavy and assault weapons into Ukraine, which only prolonged and intensified the conflict. Rather than reflecting on its own actions, the United States is throwing baseless suspicions and accusations at the Chinese side. We reject this baseless blackmail and we will not stand idly by when the US undermines the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese companies.

If the United States really wants the crisis to end as soon as possible and really cares about the lives and safety of the Ukrainian people, it must stop sending weapons and profiting from the fighting. The United States must act responsibly by helping to de-escalate the situation as soon as possible, and create the environment and conditions for peace talks between the parties involved.

Dragon TV: According to reports, Tyre Nichols, a black man from Memphis, Tennessee, recently died after a traffic stop where he was brutally beaten by five police officers. This sparked protests and demonstrations across the United States. What is China’s comment on this?

Mao Ning: This is a heartbreaking tragedy. While George Floyd’s desperate plea “I can’t breathe” still rings in our ears, police brutality in the United States has claimed yet another victim. According to data released by Mapping Police Violence, a non-profit organization, US police killed 1,186 people in 2022, an average of 3.2 per day, more than any other year since records began in 2013. Blacks accounted for 26% of those killed despite representing only 13% of the population.

The United States always cries out for democracy, freedom and human rights internationally, and even uses it to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries. What the US government should do is abandon its policy of double standards and address the problems of police violence and racial discrimination in the country, in order to prevent similar tragedies from happening again.

Kyodo News: The Chinese Embassy in Japan announced yesterday the resumption of ordinary visa issuance for Japanese citizens. However, the Japanese government has yet to remove port management measures related to COVID-19 for travelers from China. Now that China has taken the initiative to lift the countermeasures on Japan, does this mean that the Chinese side will no longer ask Japan to remove the restrictive measures as soon as possible?

Mao Ning: The Japanese embassy and consulates in China announced on January 20 the resumption of visa issuance for Chinese citizens. China resumed issuing visas to Japanese citizens in the past few days. I would like to emphasize that we are against the politicization of the response to the COVID-19 epidemic and that we call for the removal of discriminatory restrictions targeting China. We are ready to work with all countries to create more facilities for the normal movement of people between China and abroad.

AFP: Recently, an American general said that a military conflict between China and the United States could arise as early as 2025, most likely because of the Taiwan question. What is China’s comment on this?

Mao Ning: Taiwan is part of China. The resolution of the Taiwan issue is the business of the Chinese. The real cause of the new round of tension across the Taiwan Strait is the fact that Taiwan authorities continue to “seek support from the United States for Taiwan independence” and the intention certain people in the United States to “use Taiwan to contain China. We urge the United States to abide by the one-China principle and the three China-US joint communiques, to uphold the US leadership’s pledge not to support “Taiwan independence”, to cease interfere in the Taiwan issue, end military contacts with Taiwan, and stop creating new factors that may cause tension in the Taiwan Strait.

Hubei Media Group: According to reports, recently Vanuatu Foreign Minister Jotham Napat issued a statement titled “Vanuatu-China Relations are Healthy and Blossoming”. In this statement, Jotham Napat praised Vanuatu-China relations. He said Vanuatu firmly adheres to the one China policy. China is a valued partner in Vanuatu’s development aspirations and will always be a valued friend. What is China’s comment on this?

Mao Ning: We welcome Foreign Minister Jotham Napat’s statement on China-Vanuatu relations. To our knowledge, this is the first statement by Foreign Minister Jotham Napat on Vanuatu’s bilateral relations with another country since he took office last November, demonstrating the great importance that the Vanuatu values its relations with China. The statement called China a valued and respected partner and valued friend. It also indicates that the Government of Vanuatu has reaffirmed its commitment to promoting strong and vibrant diplomatic relations with China and that Vanuatu firmly adheres to the one China policy.

Over the years, as a responsible major developing country, China has been committed to building a community with a shared future for mankind. Based on the principles of equality, mutual respect, win-win cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, China has cooperated with Vanuatu and other Pacific island countries, shared with them the dividends of development of China and brought tangible benefits to their peoples. The statement issued by Vanuatu fully demonstrates that China has always been there for Pacific island countries and has been warmly welcomed by the governments and peoples of these countries. In accordance with the principles of sincerity, real results, affinity and good faith, China will continue to uplift the China-Vanuatu comprehensive strategic partnership and bring more benefits to the two peoples.

Associated Press: According to reports, the United States, Japan and the Netherlands have reached an agreement to limit the export to China of equipment needed to manufacture advanced semiconductors. What is your comment on this?

Mao Ning: The United States abuses export controls, pressures countries and induces them to form small circles to contain China, politicizes technology and trade issues, seriously undermining market rules and international economic and trade order in order to maintain their hegemony and serve their selfish interests. China is firmly opposed to this. Such practices are detrimental to others, destabilize global industrial and supply chains and have raised concerns internationally. Many people in the business community believe that the abuse of export controls will cause disruption and affect efficiency and innovation.

Anyone who tries to block the path of others can only see their own path blocked. We will closely monitor developments and firmly safeguard our legitimate interests. The parties concerned must act with caution in the light of their own long-term interests and the common interests of the international community.

Bloomberg: According to reports, Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives Kevin McCarthy is expected to visit Taiwan in the spring, and the Pentagon is already planning that next visit. What is the Foreign Ministry’s response to this?

Mao Ning: China opposes any form of official interaction between its region of Taiwan and countries having diplomatic relations with China. We hope U.S. lawmakers will uphold the one-China principle and the three China-U.S. joint communiques and refrain from doing things that are harmful to China-U.S. relations and peace and stability. in the Taiwan Strait.

Reuters: France has extended mandatory COVID-19 testing for travelers from China until February 15. Does the Chinese Foreign Ministry have any comments and plans for countermeasures?

Mao Ning: As we have repeatedly stressed, we oppose discriminatory restrictions against China. We hope relevant countries will ensure that their preventive measures against the COVID-19 outbreak are science-based and proportionate.

Reuters: North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said during a visit to South Korea on Monday that while China is not NATO’s adversary , it has become much more prominent on the NATO agenda. He said: “We should engage with China on issues like arms control, climate change and other issues, but at the same time we are very clear that China poses a challenge to our values, our interests and our security. What is the Foreign Ministry’s comment on this?

Mao Ning: China is a cooperative partner of all countries in the world, not a challenge.

I would like to emphasize that while claiming to remain a regional defensive alliance, NATO has consistently gone beyond its traditional areas of defence, progressed into new areas and strengthened its military and security ties with Asia-Pacific countries. These developments call for great vigilance on the part of the countries of the region. We hope that NATO can let go of the Cold War mentality and the spirit of confrontation between sides, and do things that will contribute to the security and stability of Europe and the whole world. We hope regional countries will stay on the good track of Asia-Pacific cooperation and play an active role in safeguarding and promoting peace, stability, development and prosperity in the world.

Prasar Bharati: I would like to ask you to clarify the new COVID-19 testing requirements for international travelers to China. Will China impose testing for COVID-19 on international travelers from a given country if that country imposes testing on Chinese travelers? Conversely, if a country removes this testing requirement, will China also remove it?

Mao Ning: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other relevant Chinese government departments have issued notices on China’s COVID-19 epidemic prevention and control regarding entry and exit, which you can refer to .

I would like to emphasize that the measures taken by China apply equally to all countries. In response to the discriminatory entry measures adopted by a few countries against China in January this year, we have adopted reciprocal measures depending on the situation.

Source: Ministry of Foregn Affair