11/10/2008, 00.00
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China asks Obama for “respect”

In its first telephone conversion with the new US leader, Chinese President Hu Jintao praises mutual ties but already lays down “conditions” for their further development. In the meantime he is getting ready to take part in the G20 Summit scheduled for the US capital and expresses his country’s willingness to intervene in global financial markets.
Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – China and the United States must “respect each other and accommodate each other's concerns, and appropriately settle sensitive issues between the two [. . .], particularly the Taiwan issue” if the two nations are to develop their relations, Chinese President Hu Jintao told US President-elect Barack Obama in a phone conversation on Saturday.  The Chinese is set to travel to Washington in the next few days for the G20 Summit.

The Xinhua news agency reported that during the first talks since the US election the two leaders discussed other major international issues of common concern, including security and climate change, both acknowledging that their bilateral relationship profits the whole world.

Mr Hu reiterated his country’s willingness to “discuss with other participants in the summit (which will bring together on 15 November leaders from the 20 most industrialised nations) how to adopt powerful measures to re-establish market confidence as early as possible, how to prevent the global financial crisis from proliferation and spreading, and how to diminish its impact on real economies in a bid avert a possible global economic recession.”

For Experts the ongoing financial crisis has only dampened, not stopped the growth of emerging markets, especially in Asia.

For the developing world, which represents at least one-third of the world economy, South-South trade has been expanding faster than North-South trade, increasing domestic services and consumption. For this reason they have been less impacted by the global slowdown and credit crunch.

Countries like China have huge foreign exchange reserves which many in Europe see as a potential source of capital for markets in need of liquidty.

Emerging states want however international financial institutions to change to reflect their greater weight.

However many are wondering whether China’s demand for greater “respect” will include a more receptive perspective on domestic issues, in particular Tibet, human rights and Taiwan.

Zhu Weiqun, a vice minister of the Communist Party's United Front Work Department, on Monday repeated China’s position to envoys of the Dalai Lama, namely that it would never allow greater autonomy for Tibet.

In recent months China had been greatly criticised for its violent repression in Tibet back in March when international pressure led it for the first time in decades to sit down for talks with representatives of the Dalai Lama, an event greeted around the world as a sign of hope.

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