CHINA/USA – Early Warning Brief: Beijing’s Blunt Message to President-elect Joe Biden (Willy Wo-Lap Lam, The Jamestown Foundation)

The People’s Republic of China (PRC) has sent a polite but blunt message to the incoming administration of U.S. President-elect Joseph R. Biden, urging the resumption of high-level ties while at the same time showing off China’s military and economic might. In his belated congratulatory message to President-elect Biden, PRC President Xi Jinping, who is also General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and Chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), said that it was in the common interest to “promote [the] healthy and stable development” of bilateral relations. “We hope both countries [will] uphold the spirit of non-conflict, non-confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation,” Xi added (Xinhua, November 25). The nationalistic party tabloid Global Times said with cautious optimism that a Biden presidency might “bring changes to deteriorating bilateral relations that have been trapped in a vicious circle under the Trump administration” (Global Times, November 8).