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China, ROK set to enhance cooperation

By MO JINGXI | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2022-05-18 07:11

State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi meets with Park Jin, the new foreign minister of the Republic of Korea, via video link in Beijng, May 16, 2022. [Photo/Xinhua]

Foreign minister calls on two nations to guard against risk of new Cold War

China and the Republic of Korea have, in their recent high-level interactions, shown a strong sense of consensus on stabilizing their relationship and expanding cooperation since Yoon Suk-yeol was elected the new ROK president, experts said.

They made the remark as State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi held a virtual meeting with new ROK Foreign Minister Park Jin on Monday.

In their first talks since Park took office last week, Wang said the China-ROK relationship has achieved great development that benefited the two peoples and contributed to stability and prosperity in the region. He called on the two countries to ensure relations develop in the right direction and usher in a further three decades of greater development of bilateral ties.

Wang also underlined the importance for China and the ROK to keep the region open and inclusive, guard against the risk of a new Cold War and oppose bloc confrontation, as this serves the fundamental interests of both countries.

Park said his country always adheres to the one-China principle and hopes to take the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries as a new starting point to take bilateral ties to new heights. The meeting was the latest high-level exchange between the two countries.

After Yoon was elected in March, President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message at the earliest opportunity, had a phone conversation with him soon afterward, and then appointed Vice-President Wang Qishan as his special representative to attend the presidential inauguration ceremony in Seoul. Wang, who is the highest-ranking Chinese official ever to attend an ROK presidential inauguration, also met with Yoon in Seoul.

Li Haidong, a professor of US studies at China Foreign Affairs University, said that the positive interactions between China and the ROK reflected the two countries' firm consensus in expanding cooperation and showed their shared aspiration for regional peace and stability.

"By continuously deepening their high-level interactions and bolstering cooperation in fields including the economy and people-to-people exchanges, China and the ROK will be able to create a barrier against any destructive force from outside the region," Li said, noting that Monday's meeting was only days ahead of United States President Joe Biden's first Asian trip, which will include the ROK.

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