China blames U.S. for bilateral tensions, reaffirms support for

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in 2019.

Mark Kauzlarich | Reuters

BEIJING — China’s top diplomat slammed the U.S. for worsening bilateral tensions, while reiterating Beijing’s support for peaceful resolutions to the Middle East and Russia-Ukraine conflicts.

“There is some progress in the China-U.S. bilateral relationship, but we have to point out that U.S. continues to persist with a wrong understanding of China and it has not fulfilled the promises it has made,” Foreign Minister Wang Yi told reporters on Thursday, according to a CNBC translation of his comments in Mandarin.

Wang’s comments came as the U.S. Senate’s homeland security committee voted Wednesday to move a bill that could limit U.S. market access for Chinese biotech firms.

A member of President Joe Biden’s administration also warned Wednesday that China could flood the U.S. electric-vehicle market with low-cost offerings.

Biden has also doubled down on restricting Beijing’s access to advanced semiconductor technology, putting a strain on U.S.-China relations that were expected to improve after President Joe Biden and President Xi Jinping met in San Francisco in November.

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Relations between the world’s two largest economies have been characterized by their competing interests, and contrasting geopolitical positions on the Middle East and the South China Sea.

Wang said the U.S. has been devising “new ways to suppress China,” saying U.S. accusations against China had reached an “unbelievable degree.” While he said he sees a way forward for both countries, Wang said communication between both countries may only continue by respecting and recognizing differences.

“The U.S. says one thing but does another, where is the trust for large countries?” said Wang, speaking on the sidelines of the country’s annual parliamentary meetings.

“If it persistently monopolizes the high end of the value chain, and keeps China at the low end, where is fairness and competition?” he added.

China’s top economic objective this year is to “modernize the industrial system and developing new quality productive forces at a faster pace” — underscoring the heavy emphasis on strengthening Beijing’s industrial prowess as a longer-term growth driver.

Global conflicts

Wang is also director of the office for foreign affairs within the Communist Party of China’s central commission, making him the country’s most senior diplomat.

After the unexplained dismissal of Qin Gang as foreign minister in July last year, Wang reassumed the role. Qin had presided over the foreign minister’s press conference at last year’s parliamentary meeting, but disappeared from public view within months and hasn’t been seen since.

Prior to reassuming the position, Wang held the foreign minister role for two terms. He has been involved with high-level U.S.-China meetings for more than a decade.

Wang did not take any questions on Qin’s disappearance at his press briefing.

More CNBC coverage of the Israel-Hamas war

In his press briefing though, Wang also…

Read More: China blames U.S. for bilateral tensions, reaffirms support for

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