BY | November 17, 2012

Beijing, (IANS) China will continue to promote friendship with its neighbours in a mutually beneficial manner, and will make sure its own development brings more benefits to its nearby countries, a minister has said.

Vice foreign minister Fu Ying said the world was watching how a more developed China would choose to use its strength, particularly in its neighbourhood, and the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) gave a clear answer to such questions.

The congress recommended continued partnership and friendship with China’s neighbouring countries, the minister wrote in an opinion piece in the China Daily.

Former general secretary Hu Jintao said China would promote the idea of “equality and mutual trust, inclusiveness and mutual learning, and mutually beneficial cooperation” in international relations.

On its policy towards neighbours, China will “continue to promote friendship and partnership with our neighbours, consolidate friendly relations and deepen mutually beneficial cooperation with them”, the daily said.

“China will endeavour to make sure that its own development will bring more benefits to its neighbours,” it said.

“China sees its rise as being part of the historical tide of the Asian renaissance. We see our relationship with neighboring areas as an important foundation for China’s global role,” the minister wrote.

“While developing ourselves, we must bring benefits to our neighbours and deepen the bond of mutual benefit with them. Only in this way would we be able to preserve peace and stability in the region and move forward with our neighbours toward shared prosperity and a common destiny,” he wrote.

China’s trade with its Asian neighbours grew from $170 billion to $1 trillion, an increase of six times.

While 10 years ago, China’s total overseas investment was less than $30 billion, at the end of 2011, China invested nearly $300 billion in Asia alone.

China has maintained restraint in addressing maritime disputes and sought to work with its neighbours towards mutually acceptable solutions through peaceful dialogue and negotiations.

The Chinese government, however, must be able to protect China’s rights and interests in the sea.

“We are opposed to any acts of provocation that infringe on China’s sovereignty and territory and cannot but respond firmly when they occur. That is also necessary in order to keep lasting peace in the region,” the minister said.

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