|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lu Kang's Regular Press Conference on May 29, 2019|
At the invitation of President Putin of the Russian Federation, President Xi Jinping will pay a state visit to Russia and attend the 23rd St Petersburg International Economic Forum from June 5 to 7.
You are welcome to attend the press briefing here in the Blue Hall at 9am tomorrow, Thursday, May 30, where Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Hanhui will brief the media and take questions on President Xi's upcoming state visit to Russia and his attendance at the 23rd St Petersburg International Economic Forum.
Q: Today Cuban Foreign Minister Rodríguez Parrilla and Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi signed a political consultation plan for the period 2020 to 2022. Could you please share more details on this plan?
A: Yes, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks with Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Eduardo Rodríguez Parrilla this morning. Afterwards, they jointly met the press and briefed them on the talks. As you said, they signed a political consultation plan for 2020-2022 between the two Ministries of Foreign Affairs. China and Cuba maintain a very close cooperative relationship with mechanisms in various areas, including between the foreign ministries.
You may have noticed our press release on this morning's talks. The two sides held deep and thorough exchanges on bilateral relations and issues of mutual interest. Cuba is the first country in the western hemisphere to establish diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China. Over the past six decades, we have grown our friendly relationship following basic norms of international relations and the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. We have always rendered each other mutual respect, mutual understanding and mutual support. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China and the 60th anniversary of the victory of Cuba's revolution. Next year we will celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. As State Councilor Wang Yi said this morning, China-Cuba relations are at a new starting point.
During Cuban leader President Miguel Diaz Canel's visit to China last year, President Xi Jinping reached important consensus with him on deepening bilateral relations in the new era. The two sides agreed to enhance strategic communication and strengthen practical cooperation in various sectors.
Following that, the two sides now have agreed to step up cooperation in such key areas as new energy, tourism and biopharmaceutical, and to further expand mutually-beneficial cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative.
The two sides also exchanged views on the current international and regional situation. They agreed to uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. There was also an exchange of ideas on the Venezuela situation, an issue of mutual concern on which the two sides share much common ground.
Q: Huawei stated recently that without its authorization, FedEx, a US delivery service company, diverted two Huawei packages sent from Japan and addressed to China to the United States, and attempted to divert two more packages sent from Viet Nam and addressed to other Huawei offices in Asia to the United States. This incident has drawn much attention and become a hot topic on social media. Many believe what FedEx claims as an error is actually a "calculated error", possibly at the beckoning of the US government. I wonder if you have any comment? Are you concerned the US side may steal Huawei's technology information through FedEx?
A: We note the media reports and comments on social media. Normally we do not comment on business interactions. However, given what has happened, we believe it's only natural for Huawei and the public to demand a reasonable explanation from FedEx.
I don't know if such misroutings happen a lot with FedEx. If that is the case, I must say a big company like FedEx should have provided better services. If not, it is all the more necessary for FedEx to explain clearly why Huawei packages, one after another, have encountered this problem.
Q: Incumbent President Mutharika of Malawi won the presidential election with 38.57 percent of the vote. I wonder if you have any comment on that? Will the Chinese leader congratulate President Mutharika?
A: We are pleased to see the successful conclusion of Malawi's presidential election and congratulates President Mutharika on his reelection. Under his leadership, we believe Malawi will make greater progress in its national development.
President Mutharika, who attended the FOCAC Beijing Summit last year, highly values Malawi's relationship with China and expressed on many occasions readiness to deepen across-the-board cooperation with China. China attaches high importance to bilateral ties with Malawi. We will work with the Malawian side to deepen friendly communication and cooperation in various fields and deliver more benefits to our peoples.
Q: Yesterday an official of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) said that the Chinese people will not be happy if someone contains China using the products made from rare earths exported from China. This statement was also quoted by Xinhua News Agency. Does it mean that China has new considerations on using rare earths as a countermeasure against the US?
A: Since the NDRC is part of the Chinese government, remarks made by NDRC officials certainly are a voice of authority.
Q: We saw that Kong Xuanyou is the new ambassador to Japan. I'm wondering if you could tell us if China has a new envoy on North Korea-related issues?
A: China has all along been playing a constructive role on the Peninsula issue, and we will continue to do so.
As for the new Chinese envoy for Korean Peninsula affairs, we will release relevant information in due course.
Q: You just said that Cuban and Chinese foreign ministers discussed the situation in Venezuela. I wonder if they have reached any kind of agreement to a common reaction for what's happening in Venezuela or what kind of measures or support for the current Venezuelan leadership? I wonder if you could share more details on this?
A: State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi had an in-depth exchange of ideas with Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Eduardo Rodríguez Parrilla on the Venezuela issue and reached important consensus. I would like to share more details with you.
They agree that the Venezuela issue can only be solved through peaceful, independent consultation and dialogue between the government and the opposition. That serves the interests of all Venezuelans and defends non-interference in domestic affairs, a basic norm of international relations. China and Cuba will strengthen communication with countries in the region and the international community to continue to play a constructive role in the settlement of this issue.
Q: The US Treasury Department has said again that countries including China are suspected as possible currency manipulators. I wonder if you have a comment on that?
A: We note the US report. Its conclusion against labeling China a currency manipulator is consistent with common sense and the shared view of the international community. We hope the US will respect facts and market laws and not politicize exchange rates. We have repeatedly advised it to abide by multilateral rules and not conduct unilateral assessments of other countries' exchange rates. It is not for the US to say whether a country is manipulating its currency or not. Relevant multilateral institutions' exchange rate assessments are better authorities.
China will resolutely deepen market reform of the exchange rate regime, continue to improve the managed, floating regime based on market supply and demand and with reference to a basket of currencies, and keep the RMB exchange rate basically stable at an adaptive and equilibrium level.
Q: Tomorrow is the swearing-in ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Do you have information about who is going to represent China tomorrow?
A: The Chinese leader has sent a congratulatory message to Mr. Modi on his reelection as the Indian Prime Minister. We have also expressed congratulations in our previous press conference.
As for your question regarding the Chinese envoy for Prime Minister Modi's inauguration ceremony, the same question was asked recently by other Indian journalists. We will release information in due course.