Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mao Ning’s Regular Press Conference on October 12, 2022




CCTV: Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic said in a recent interview that during the past decade, Serbia’s exports to China increased 152 times and the bilateral trade in 2021 amounted to €5 billion despite the impact of COVID-19.




She said that China has been firmly advancing high-level opening-up, which brings development opportunities for the whole world.


Do you have any comment?




Mao Ning: We appreciate Prime Minister Brnabic’s positive remarks.


China and Serbia are each other’s trustworthy and reliable partners.


Bilateral economic and trade cooperation has made rapid progress and brought tangible benefits to the two peoples.




The fact is, China has become a major trading partner of not just Serbia, but more than 130 countries and regions.


Over the past decade, China’s trade in goods totaled 262.3 trillion yuan, of which imports accounted for 117.6 trillion yuan and registered an average annual growth rate of 4.7%.


China has utilized $1.2 trillion of foreign investment, which grows at an average annual rate of 5%.


The capital stock of China’s FDI abroad has soared from less than $0.6 trillion to over $2.7 trillion, now ranking the third in the world.


China is making important and visible contributions to promoting the global economic growth and building an open world economy.




As we speak, the world economy is facing multiple challenges, and unilateralism and protectionism are on the rise.


China will always support economic globalization, unswervingly promote high-level opening-up, accelerate the building of a new development paradigm, and provide more market, investment and growth opportunities for companies of all countries.






Global Times: According to reports, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz recently said explicitly that he supports globalization, adding that decoupling is the “wrong answer” and that Germany must do business with the rest of the world, including China.


Executive Vice-President of the European Commission Valdis Dombrovskis, who is in charge of economic affairs, also believed that decoupling from China is not an option for companies in the EU. He added that EU’s trading relationship with China “needs more balance and reciprocity” and that “the EU should continue engaging with China with pragmatism”.


What is China’s comment on this?




Mao Ning: We commend these remarks from the European leaders.


China also supports globalization and opposes decoupling.


With the world economy in the doldrums, to stay open and engaged in cooperation and grow economic and trade ties is good not only for China and Europe, but also for the world economic recovery.




China and the EU are each other’s important economic and trade partners. Our bilateral cooperation has been mutually beneficial.


Last year, China-EU trade exceeded $800 billion for the first time and two-way investment went beyond $270 billion in cumulative terms.


In the first eight months this year, total trade between China and the EU was $575.22 billion, up by 8.8% year-on-year.


EU’s investment in China was $7.45 billion, up by 121.5% year-on-year.


Such trade and investment cooperation has boosted the development of both sides.




China-Europe cooperation is deeply rooted in solid public support, extensive common interests and similar strategic needs. Such cooperation enjoys great resilience and potential.


China is ready to work with Europe to jointly work for greater progress in bilateral cooperation in various areas and deliver more benefits to the two peoples.




AFP: The IMF projected that China’s economic growth this year will be the second weakest in over 40 years and blamed it on the dynamic zero-COVID policy.


What is China’s comment?




Mao Ning: I would refer you to the competent authorities on this question.


Facing the complex and challenging situation at home and abroad, the Chinese economy has withstood the pressure and demonstrated a momentum of steady recovery and its performance has stayed within the appropriate range.


The fact that the Chinese economy has strong resilience, ample potential and enormous space remains unchanged and the fundamentals sustaining the sound growth of the Chinese economy in the long run will also stay unchanged.




As to the COVID-19 protocols you mentioned, let me say that only when the pandemic is contained can the economy be stabilized.


When all things are considered, China’s COVID measures have worked most effectively and been most cost-effective.




CRI: Lesotho’s parliamentary election results released recently showed that the newly established Revolution for Prosperity (RFP) party, securing nearly half of the seats, emerged as the single biggest party and is expected to lead the formation of a coalition.


What is China’s comment?




Mao Ning: China congratulates Lesotho on its parliamentary elections which have gone smoothly.


China-Lesotho relations enjoy a sound momentum of growth and our cooperation in various areas continues to deepen.


China looks forward to working with the new government of Lesotho to keep advancing China-Lesotho relations.




Bloomberg: There have been reports in British media saying that the UK government will declare China as an official threat.


This is coming after the UK spy chief said that the politically motivated use of technology by China was an increasingly urgent problem. That’s from the speech of the UK spy chief Jeremy Fleming.


What’s the foreign ministry’s comment on this?




Mao Ning: China follows an independent foreign policy of peace. China’s development brings opportunities to other countries, not threats or challenges. We hope that the new UK government can view China and China-UK relations in an objective and rational light.


Subscribing to the obsolete mindset of “China threat” benefits no one and will eventually backfire. Such an approach leads nowhere.




As to the remarks made by the British intelligence official you mentioned, as I said yesterday, the allegation is completely groundless and a projection of the alleger’s own image. What those remarks reveal is a Cold War mentality and ideological bias.


China’s development is aimed at making lives better for the Chinese people. It will only contribute positively to world peace and stability.


Our development does not target anyone, still less pose any threat.


Making an issue out of China and stoking antagonism and confrontation does not rid the UK of its own problems.