Xi looks to work with Trump

China Daily (USA) - - FRONT PAGE - By ZHAO HUANXIN in Bei­jing and CHEN WEIHUA in Wash­ing­ton

Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping sent con­grat­u­la­tions to US Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump on Wed­nes­day, say­ing he looked for­ward to work­ing with him to push bi­lat­eral re­la­tions “fur­ther for­ward from a new start­ing point”.

In a close race for the White House on Tues­day, Trump de­feated Demo­cratic ri­val Hil­lary Clin­ton, sur­pass­ing the thresh­old of 270 of the to­tal 538 elec­toral votes needed to win the pres­i­dency. Trump won 279 elec­toral votes while Clin­ton won 228 elec­toral votes.

I am look­ing for­ward to work­ing to­gether with to ex­pand China-US co­op­er­a­tion in ev­ery field ... ” Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping

How­ever, Clin­ton won the pop­u­lar vote, al­most 200,000 more than Trump. This re­peated what hap­pened in the 2000 elec­tion when Al Gore won the pop­u­lar vote but lost in the Elec­toral Col­lege to Ge­orge W. Bush.

Clin­ton made a phone call to the Repub­li­can to con­cede the elec­tion but did not make a con­ces­sion speech un­til Wed­nes­day morn­ing.

In Xi’s mes­sage, he said the world’s two largest economies bear a spe­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity for main­tain­ing world peace and sta­bil­ity and boost­ing global de­vel­op­ment and pros­per­ity, adding that they share ex­ten­sive in­ter­ests.

“I highly value the re­la­tions be­tween China and the United States, and I am look­ing for­ward to work­ing to­gether with you to ex­pand Chi­naUS co­op­er­a­tion in ev­ery field, at the bi­lat­eral, re­gional and global lev­els, on the ba­sis of the prin­ci­ples of non-con­flict, non-con­fronta­tion, mu­tual re­spect and win-win co­op­er­a­tion, with dif­fer­ences con­trolled in a con­struc­tive man­ner, so as to push China-US re­la­tions fur­ther for­ward from a new start­ing point, bet­ter ben­e­fit­ing the peo­ples of the two coun­tries and other coun­tries,” Xi said.

Ear­lier on Wed­nes­day, For­eign Min­istry spokesman Lu Kang said Bei­jing ex­pected to work with the new US gov­ern­ment af­ter Trump takes of­fice in Jan­uary to main­tain sus­tained, healthy and sta­ble growth of China-US re­la­tions, to ben­e­fit peo­ple in both coun­tries and across the world.

In his vic­tory speech, Trump sounded more mea­sured. “I want to tell the world com­mu­nity that while we will al­ways put Amer­ica’s in­ter­ests first, we will deal fairly with ev­ery­one, with ev­ery­one. All peo­ple and all other na­tions,” he said af­ter the up­set vic­tory. “We will seek com­mon ground, not hos­til­ity; part­ner­ship, not con­flict.”

Trump said he would em­bark on a project to re­build US in­fra­struc­ture and would dou­ble US eco­nomic growth. He also said the na­tion owed Clin­ton “a ma­jor debt of grat­i­tude” for her years of pub­lic ser­vice, an abrupt de­par­ture from his cam­paign trail rhetoric, in which he re­peat­edly slammed Clin­ton as “crooked”.

The el­e­va­tion of the 70-year-old re­al­ity-TV and real es­tate mogul cre­ates new un­cer­tain­ties for the global econ­omy, said Huang Ri­han of the Cen­ter for China and Glob­al­iza­tion.

“Af­ter he takes of­fice, trade pro­tec­tion­ism may gather steam in the US, which would dis­rupt trade at a time when growth is al­ready frag­ile,” Huang said.

The un­cer­tain­ties aris­ing from the US elec­tion sent waves through the global mar­kets. The eq­uity mar­ket in China fluc­tu­ated on Wed­nes­day, with bench­mark A-share and H-share in­dexes dip­ping. An­a­lysts said the sit­u­a­tion could last for the next few days be­fore in­vestors re­fo­cus on eco­nomic fun­da­men­tals. Global stock mar­kets bounced back strongly on Wed­nes­day.

Dur­ing his cam­paign, Trump had vowed to win eco­nomic con­ces­sions from China and pledged to slap 45 per­cent tar­iffs on im­ported Chi­nese goods.

MIKE SEGAR / REUTERS

US Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump, his son Bar­ron and wife, Me­la­nia, greet sup­port­ers dur­ing his post-elec­tion rally in New York City early on Wed­nes­day.

CAR­LOS BARRIA / REUTERS

Hil­lary Clin­ton ad­dresses her staff and sup­port­ers about the re­sults of the US elec­tion as for­mer pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton and her run­ning mate Tim Kaine ap­plaud at a ho­tel in Man­hat­tan on Wed­nes­day.

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