Sincerity, action much needed as China, US agree to restart trade talks
The outcomes of the highly anticipated meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart, Donald Trump, on the sidelines of the Group of 20 Osaka summit on Saturday have shone a ray of light upon the clouded global economy.
At their gathering, the two leaders agreed to restart economic and trade consultations between the two countries on the basis of equality and mutual respect. They have also agreed that the US side will not add new tariffs on Chinese exports.
The decision to reboot the trade talks means that the efforts to resolve the trade differences between the two countries are back onto the right track.
It has been widely acknowledged that a more stable China-US relationship is good not only for China and the United States, but also for the wider world.
China and the United States do share some differences, and Beijing hopes to solve these differences in their consultations. More sincerity and action are needed in that process.
As the world's top two economies, China and the United States both benefit from cooperation and lose in confrontation. And it is always the right choice for the two sides to settle their differences through dialogues, not confrontation.
The relationship between China and the United States has at present been facing some difficulties. Neither side can benefit from such a troubled situation.
Since the two countries set up their diplomatic ties 40 years ago, China and the United States have jointly fostered their cooperation in a mutually beneficial fashion.
As a result, two-way trade have made almost unbelievable strides, growing from less than US$2.5 billion in 1979 to over 630 billion last year. And the fact that more than 14,000 people cross the Pacific every day offers a glimpse into just how intensive the interactions and exchanges are between the two peoples.
Therefore, as China and the United States enjoy highly integrated interests and extensive cooperation areas, they should not fall into so-called traps of conflict and confrontation.
When the two presidents met each other at last year's G20 summit in Argentina's capital city of Buenos Aires, they reached an important consensus to pause the trade confrontation and resume talks. Since then, negotiating teams on both sides have held seven rounds of consultations in search for an early settlement.
However, China's utmost sincerity demonstrated over the months seems to have only prompted some trade hawks in Washington to push their luck.
Now that the two sides have picked up their trade talks, they need to proceed by treating each other on an equal footing and showing due respect, which is a condition to the final settlement of their divergence.
Apart from that, actions are also needed.
Few would disagree that fixing the China-US trade problem needs wisdom and practical actions at each and every key turn along the path leading towards the final settlement. If the US side delivers no action that highlights the spirit of equality and mutual respect, and asks too much, the hard-won restart will produce no results.
For China, it will always walk its own path and realize a better self-development in spite of the outcomes of the trade talks.
At the just concluded G20 summit, Xi put forward a set of new opening-up measures, sending a strong signal that China will keep up with its steps of reforms.
As the two sides are entering a new phase of their trade negotiations, it is hoped that China and the Unites States can join hands in actively communicating with each other and properly handling their differences.
It is also hoped that Washington can work with Beijing to build a China-US relationship featuring coordination, cooperation and stability, so as to better benefit the two peoples, and people of other countries as well.