December 28, 2010A report on the world economy and the international situation was presented in Beijing on Dec. 27, according to a live broadcast on China.org.cn.
The "Yellow Book of the World Economy in 2011" and "Yellow Book of International Politics in 2011," which were also being launched by the Institute of World Economics and Politics under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (IWEP) and the Social Sciences Academic Press (SSAP), were released at that time.
The report discussed the hot issues and challenges of the world economy and international development. It analyzed the latest trends of the world economy and the changing international situation in 2011 with regard to global politics and security and their influence on China. The "Analysis and Forecast of the World Economy in 2011" and the "Annual Report on International Politics in 2011," compiled by the SSAP, were also officially released.
The yellow book points out that the Sino-U.S. relationship has moved back and forth along a continuum between conflict and cooperation over the past year. Although bilateral relations have been like that for several decades, both aspects are highlighted at present. The second round of economic and strategic dialogues embodied an unprecedented cooperation, while friction and low-level confrontation in the military interaction were also unprecedented.
The yellow book indicates that these situations were influenced by the strengthening of the desire on both sides to define bilateral relations.
First, the interdependent relationship between China and the United States has been continually deepened, and the financial crisis has further linked the mutual interests of the two countries. The United States exports to China increased 39 percent in the first five months of 2010, which surpassed the growth in foreign trade with other countries. The facts show that Sino-U.S. economic interaction is crucially important for the U.S. economy.
In addition to the economic interdependence of the two countries, the United States and China have formed a relationship of correlative dependence and cooperation in a series of global issues, such as climate change, nuclear nonproliferation, anti-terrorism and other.
As a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council and a nuclear power, China plays a decisive role in geopolitics. These factors mean the United States must cooperate with China in these most pressing international issues. This interdependence also forms the structural basis of Sino-U.S. relations.
Meanwhile, the increase of Chinese national strength has also led to political tensions between the United States and China. As China has increased its military power in recent years, it has increasingly demonstrated the determination to defend its own interests — especially maritime interests — which has inevitably led to conflict with the United States. Facing the new military strategy of China, the U.S. Navy has adopted a policy of containment. The deepened distrust with regard to security between the United States and China in 2010 and the antagonistic interaction in the form of military exercises were products of the development of this structural contradiction.
As the corresponding development of this contradiction, the diplomatic game on the South China Sea between the United States and China is also becoming more heated. China hopes to resolve the territorial disputes on the South China Sea through bilateral means with the relevant countries. However, after sitting on the sidelines over the years, the United States has tried to complicate and internationalize the issue. The yellow book speculated that the United States intends to deal with the growing anxiety and fears of China's neighbors over its rising power by intervening in the affairs on the South China Sea.
According to the analysis of the yellow book, the power struggle between China and the United States is undoubtedly a key element of bilateral relations. However, the interdependence between the two sides in economic and other global issues is also a factor that would lead to cooperation. Taking this interdependence as an anchor, the conflict of the two sides can be contained in an overall situation full of struggle.
Finally, the yellow book noted that the Sino-U.S. interaction is like a pendulum always swinging between cooperation and conflict. Sometimes there are just a small number of swings and sometimes surprising ups and downs.
Judging from the policy evolution on China of the Obama administration this year, the two sides will not be a serious confrontation despite the obvious hardening, deterrence and containment moving frequently. The increase in extent and intensity of swing of the bilateral interaction indicates that the growth and decline in power marks a new phase. The rising China needs to further adapt to its roles while the United States also needs to further adapt to the new role of China.
By Zhang Qian, People's Daily Online