China Foreign Ministry presser, July 8, 2022

China Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Zhao Lijian held a regular press conference on July?8, 2022

Some Excerpts

AFP: Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is in grave condition after being shot this morning. Will China send condolences to Mr. Shinzo Abe’s family??

Zhao Lijian: We’ve taken note of this unexpected incident and are shocked. We are following the updates and hope that former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will be out of danger and recover soon. We would like to extend sympathies to his family.?

Reuters: This is also about the shooting of former Japanese Prime Minister Abe. Some Chinese netizens commented that he has mishandled Japan’s relations with China. How do you comment about this?

Zhao Lijian: I am not going to comment on the remarks posted online. I’ve just stated the position of the Chinese government. This unexpected incident should not be linked to China-Japan relations.

Kyodo News: Do you have any comment on Shinzo Abe’s policy toward China when he was Japan’s prime minister?

Zhao Lijian: Just now, I made clear China’s position on what happened to former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. We also noted that former Prime Minister Abe made contribution to the improvement and growth of China-Japan relations.?

China News Service: Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, reportedly said that in 2021, China was home to 79% of the global manufacturing capacity for polysilicon. A full 42% of that is located in Xinjiang. This level of concentration in the global supply chain represents “a considerable vulnerability”. Governments should take necessary measures to diversify their supply chains. What’s China’s comment??

Zhao Lijian: It is true that China is the world’s largest photovoltaic (PV) manufacturer and has more installed capacity than other countries. Xinjiang is the world’s most important production base of polysilicon, an essential material of the PV industry. This is the result of a combination of factors, including our efforts to meet carbon peaking and carbon neutrality targets, technological breakthroughs, effective cost control and the enormous market demand. China’s PV industry contributes significantly to the development of renewable energy worldwide.

It is important to point out that the current vulnerability in the global PV industrial and supply chains mainly stems from the US allegation of “forced labor” in Xinjiang and the so-called Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act. The US is illegally suppressing and unilaterally sanctioning China’s PV industry without justification. This is seriously against the law of the market and WTO rules and detrimental to the international trade order and the stability of global PV industrial and supply chains and global climate response. The US needs to immediately stop spreading lies and stop enforcing this malicious legislation.?

AFP: Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong said that she will discuss stabilizing bilateral relations and ending the so-called “trade war” with State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi at the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting. Is China willing to remove tariffs on Australian products? And what topics will State Councilor Wang raise at the talks?

Zhao Lijian: I have responded to several questions on China-Australia relations over the past couple of days. I would like to reiterate that a sound and steady relationship between China and Australia meets the fundamental interests and common aspiration of the two peoples. We hope Australia will view China and its relations with China in a rational and positive light, work with China in the spirit of mutual respect and seeking common ground while putting differences aside, and create enabling conditions to bring the relations back to the right track.

I would also like to stress that the channels for dialogue and contact between China and Australia are open and smooth. Sound and stable political relations are the premises and cornerstone of practical cooperation. To improve China-Australia relations, there is no “auto-pilot” mode. A reset requires concrete actions.

I would like to stress again that the measures Chinese authorities have taken on imported foreign goods are strictly consistent with Chinese laws and regulations and established international practice. By taking these measures, the authorities are being responsible for domestic industries and consumers. They are definitely not “coercive” trade practices as described by the Australian side.

Xinhua News Agency: The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) decided at its recent summit to lift some economic and financial sanctions on Mali and Burkina Faso after the two countries set up transition periods for 24 months. At the same time, ECOWAS will maintain the suspension of the two countries from ECOWAS decision-making bodies, and calls on the international community to provide humanitarian and other assistance for the two countries. What is China’s comment?

Zhao Lijian: China has noted the decisions of ECOWAS at its 61st summit. We welcome and commend the friendly consultation and positive progress of ECOWAS on the political transition period in Mali and Burkina Faso. China always believes that African people should seek African solutions for African problems, supports relevant countries and regional organizations in maintaining friendly communication and consultation on political transition, and stays committed to safeguarding and promoting peace and stability in West Africa. We hope the international community can provide humanitarian and other support for the regional countries. China will continue to play a positive role in this regard.

Reuters: Boris Johnson resigned yesterday as the Conservative party leader. Do you have any comment?

Zhao Lijian: We saw the reports about Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement of his resignation as the Conservative party leader. This is the UK’s internal affair. No matter what political changes may take place in the UK, we hope the British side will take a long-term perspective and keep in mind the larger picture, work with China in the same direction, and promote the sustained and steady development of bilateral relations.

CRI: Former UN official Atif Kubursi said the other day that NATO’s eastward expansion and its attempt to include Ukraine in the grouping is the underlying reason for Russia-Ukraine conflict and noted that such behaviors have seriously undermined UN’s mechanism for upholding world peace and security established after WWII. Do you have any comment?

Zhao Lijian: I have stated China’s position a few times on NATO-related issues over the past few days.

NATO is known to be a war machine. The history of NATO is full of creating conflicts and wars. The Cold War has long ended, and NATO, which should have been a thing of the past, has become a US tool to exercise hegemony and wage wars. It has become a major source of turbulence and instability to the world…….

The Asia-Pacific region is an anchor of peace and stability, an engine of development and growth, and a new cooperation hub. It is a region with the biggest development potential in the world. NATO’s continuous expansion in Europe has led to the Ukraine crisis. Now it is seeking to reach beyond its geographical confines and mission scope by stoking bloc confrontation in the Asia-Pacific. This will inevitably bring huge risks to regional and global security. NATO is posing looming “systemic challenges” to world peace and security.?

Countries in the Asia-Pacific welcome efforts for peace, development and success, not attempts to incite provocation, create confrontation or stir up trouble. NATO must abandon its warlike behavior and give up disrupting Europe, the Asia-Pacific and the world.

Phoenix TV: We also noted that the Republic of Korea has recently decided to step up cooperation with NATO, including forging a partnership with NATO and establishing a diplomatic mission to NATO in Brussels. Do you have any comment?

Zhao Lijian: I just made China’s position clear on NATO again. We hope all countries would have a clear sense of what is right and be soberly aware of the attempts to form small circles and create bloc confrontation motivated by the Cold War mentality, so that countries will not be used or drawn into those attempts, and play a constructive role in world peace and stability.?

 The following question was raised after the press conference:?

According to reports, former Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe died from severe injuries after being shot. Do you have any comment?

Zhao Lijian: We are shocked by the unexpected incident. Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had contributed to the improvement and growth of China-Japan relations. We express condolences and sympathies to the family of Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

https://www.mfa.gov.cn/eng/xwfw_665399/s2510_665401/202207/t20220708_10717764.html