WASHINGTON, Feb. 6 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Ambassador to the United States Cui Tiankai said here Wednesday that there's "no better option" for China and the United States than cooperation.
Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai (L2) and US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross (R1) attend the reception, Washington DC, Feb. 6, 2019. (Photo: Zhao Huanxin/China Daily)
Speaking at the reception for the 40th anniversary of China-US diplomatic relations and the Chinese New Year, Cui said history has proven that cooperation serves the interest of both countries.
"The past 40 years have proved that cooperation is in the interests of both countries while confrontation hurts both," Cui said, adding "there is no better option for us than cooperation."
Cui highlighted the progress both countries have made over the past four decades, saying "China and the US have interacted on such an extensive scale and influenced each other in so many ways that each is stronger and better than it would be otherwise."
According to Cui, daily trade between the two countries is worth more than $1.5 billion. More than 14,000 people fly between the two countries every day for work, study and leisure. There are now 50 pairs of sister states/provinces and 227 pairs of sister cities between the two countries.
He acknowledged the differences between China and the United States in history, culture and social system, but said both countries should "not be intimidated by those differences."
"We need to respect each other's independent choice of social systems and paths of development, and accommodate each other's core interests and concerns," Cui said.
"Whether on economic or security issues, we can always find a way out if we address the differences with candor and good faith, based on mutual respect and common interest," Cui said.
Cui urged both countries to remain open to each other and become more connected instead.
"We are the two largest economies in the world. Each has its own strengths. Each is complementary to the other. Both have much greater opportunities if we stay open to each other. Both will be much more prosperous if we cooperate with each other," Cui said.
US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, National Security Council Senior Director for Asian Affairs Matt Pottinger and a number of members of Congress attended the event.
The People's Republic of China and the United States formally established ties on Jan. 1, 1979.
Over the past four decades, the progress of China-US ties is nothing but staggering, far exceeding most people's expectations.
Bilateral trade grew from a negligible $2.5 billion in the late 1970s to over $580 billion in 2017, while the stock of two-way investment rose from practically nil to more than $230 billion.