Xi looks to work with Trump
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.
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.
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.