And with two months left until Trump leaves office, Beijing may want to avoid anything that further destabilizes US-China relations.
Speaking at a regular press conference in Beijing on Monday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said China had “acknowledged” Biden’s claim of victory.
“We understand that the results of the general election will be determined according to the laws and procedures of the United States,”; Mr. Wang answered CNN’s question. “We will take the matter of the statement (congratulation) in accordance with the international practice.”
Wang did not specify what “international practice” might have to do with, especially considering the large number of countries that congratulated Biden, including the United Kingdom, Australia, Israel, France and Germany.
Beijing’s apparent reluctance to give a firm answer to the election outcome as Chinese state media expresses cautious optimism that the Biden presidency could help re-establish US relations. Trung, which has significantly deteriorated during Trump’s time in office.
The editorial states: “By adhering to this approach and strengthening their commercial ties, the two countries can regain the overall positive momentum that has characterized their relationship over the past four decades. by”.
The Chinese government-backed nationalist tabloid, The Global Times published an editorial titled, “Give up the illusion of Sino-US relations, but don’t give up the effort” , which suggested that Beijing “contact the Biden group as closely as possible, further joint efforts to restore Sino-US relations to a foreseeable state.”
However, it concludes by noting that in the end, China can only rely on itself. The editorial wrote: “China must become a country that the US cannot suppress or destabilize, and think that cooperation with China is the best option for America to realize its national interests” .
The United States tensions China
In the final weeks of the campaign, on the trail and during debates, President Trump stressed that China is an important part of his platform, attacking Beijing in the end to blame. the Covid-19 pandemic, or “Chinese virus” as he used to call it.
Meanwhile, his foreign minister, Mike Pompeo, has traveled across Asia to build an anti-Beijing coalition, visiting Japan, India and several other countries outside China.
“The United States is up against the challenge of China,” Pompeo said last month, adding that the ruling Chinese Communist Party is “the greatest threat to freedom and democracy today.”
Analysts expect Biden to refrain from this kind of rhetoric and take a more pragmatic approach to Beijing, even if he may doubt China’s growing influence and power as a rival. Republican era.
Speaking to the election results, Jeff Moon, an analyst and former US diplomat in China, said he wished Biden would resume “traditional practices heavily based on the interagency American community and America’s traditional allies, making more considerate decisions toward the US -Chinese problems “contradict Trump’s erratic policies toward Beijing.
“That approach would lead to a more formal and predictable model of bilateral engagement, which helps to re-establish relations by stabilizing US-China relations as a whole,” Moon told CNN. There are misunderstandings that can escalate conflicts ”.
But he added that deeper issues may not be resolved yet. “After decades of US-China dialogue and cooperation on all bilateral issues, China has consistently refused to adopt changes and policy reforms that address concerns,” Moon said. of America ”. “Hence, China’s reset formula is unacceptable to the United States.”
Speaking last month, Cui Tiankai, the Chinese ambassador to the United States, said Beijing was “firmly opposed to a new or divided” Cold War, and we are committed to delivering healthy development. strong and stable for Sino-US relations. ”
“The Sino-US relationship is experiencing serious difficulties, rarely seen in 41 years of diplomatic relations. “This has seriously undermined the fundamental interests of the Chinese and American people.”
But the rift in relations was not only motivated by Washington, but by all that Trump could have accelerated.
In part, the fractured relationship is the result of Beijing’s increasingly aggressive foreign policy and its military expansionism, as well as the increasingly demoralized internationalization of its human rights abuses. customs in Xinjiang, Tibet and Hong Kong.
And while Beijing could hope this was merely due to the pressure of the US presidential election campaign, Biden boasted his ability to confront China as opposed to Trump, accusing the president of being out of office for initially embraced powerful Chinese leader Xi Jinping and praised his man. react.
But Beijing may not feel compelled to compromise the United States under the Biden administration, especially when the risk of radical or unpredictable action is significantly lower than under Trump, who recalls. Last month threatened to make China “pay a heavy price for what it did to the world.”