China-US relations can go to a whole new level in 2014
Updated: 2014-01-06 11:08
By Chen Weihua (China Daily USA)
To Cui Tiankai, China's ambassador to the United States, China-US relations are like a big ship that will continue to forge ahead despite occasional stormy seas ahead.
The two countries marked the 35th anniversary of their diplomatic ties this month, a milestone Cui described as "an event of great international significance". The US announced on Dec 15, 1978, it would sever diplomatic ties with Taiwan and establish diplomatic ties with the People's Republic of China.
In Cui's view, China-US relations have always been based on shared interests, from the initial strategic security needs to the present broadening and deepening shared interests in bilateral, regional and global issues.
"Great changes have taken place in the world, in China and in the United States in the past 35 years, but our bilateral relationship has generally kept its momentum moving forward," Cui told a press briefing on Friday in Washington.
Both nations have benefitted from the relationship. While bilateral trade each year has grown from almost non-existence in the 1970s to approaching $500 billion, China and the US have become ever more intertwined in almost every field.
Cui said that he himself was also surprised to learn that there were 230,000 Chinese students enrolled in US colleges and universities, accounting for nearly 30 percent of all international students here. At the same time, 68,000 American students have studied in China since US President Barack Obama announced the 100,000 Strong Initiative in 2009, whose goal is to send 100,000 US students to China over the next four years.
While China and the US have found more shared interests from trade to security, Cui believes such a relationship goes far beyond the bilateral realm. A stable China-US relationship is not only essential to the two nations, but also to the Asia-Pacific region and the world, according to Cui, who is in his 10th month as China's ambassador to the US.
"So in this sense, maintaining a healthy and steady development of China-US relations is not just in the shared interest of the two nations, but also their responsibility to the world," he said.