Interview: U.S. must see China’s rise as positive force for global growth, says expert

November 17 , 2023

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 16 (Xinhua) — The United States and other Western nations must see China’s development as a positive force for enhancing global growth, said Denis Simon, President of the Alliance of Global Talent Organizations(AGTO), on Wednesday.

“Overall, by helping stabilize relations, the two leaders gave their overt blessing to re-engagement,” said Simon in an email interview on the outcome of the summit between Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S. President Joe Biden at Filoli Estate, a country house approximately 40 km south of San Francisco, California.

“Hopefully, this can bring an end to talk about decoupling and de-linking. And, hopefully, the two nations can further establish new levels of trust and confidence that both countries can gain from improved relations and expanded contacts, especially through people-to-people diplomacy,” said Simon, who also serves as a professor of Global Business and Technology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the executive director of the Center for Innovation Policy at the Law School at Duke University.

“This was a very important get together because it seems to have succeeded in lowering the temperature in terms of the prevailing tensions between the two countries,” Simon said. He added that both leaders believe it “unnecessary nor inevitable that there must be conflict between our two nations. Nothing can replace these types of candid discussions.”

The meeting was able to build upon the successful exchange of visits that have occurred involving high-level officials such as U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Simon said. “There was a positive momentum in the air, and it seems to have had positive reverberations across their discussions.”

Simon noticed that the Chinese president, in his remarks, reiterated that China and the United States should uphold the principle of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation.

“To appreciate why President Xi has continued to emphasize these three cardinal principles, you must understand Chinese history going back to the Western incursions of the 19th century. Today, China has been able to restore its place on the world stage, and it wants to be accepted as a full-fledged member of the family of nations,” said Simon.

“Moreover, it is no longer a bystander on the sidelines and wants a voice in terms of the evolution of the international order. The United States must understand that the world is changing. Few could have imagined the rapidity of China’s rise when the reforms and open door (reform and opening-up) were first announced,” said Simon, who has over 40 years of experience studying and working in China. From 2015 to 2020, he held the post of Executive Vice Chancellor of Duke Kunshan University in Jiangsu Province.

Today, China is the world’s second-largest economy, a major trading nation and the world’s second-largest spender on R&D. Simon pointed out how China eradicated poverty for tens of millions of Chinese citizens.

“Certainly … its (China’s) new stature brings with it certain important responsibilities and obligations. That understood, it is important for the United States and other Western nations to see China’s development as a positive force for enhancing global growth,” he said.

China’s rise brings many opportunities for cooperation on global challenges, such as climate change, clean energy, global health and managing AI, he said.

“Reducing Chinese modernization into a zero-sum game deprives not only the United States but also the rest of the world of China’s capabilities, brainpower, creativity, and resources,” said Simon. “The idea of pursuing win-win outcomes is good for China, good for the United States, and good for the world.”

From Xinhua, 2023-11-17