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2009年7月30日 (木)

米中戦略対話 どう進む新しい時代の「G2」

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Jul. 30, 2009)
U.S.-China dialogue exposes responsibilities
米中戦略対話 どう進む新しい時代の「G2」(7月30日付・読売社説)

The first round of the ministerial-level U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue ended in Washington on Tuesday with the issuing of a joint statement.

The dialogue was a revamp of the talks between the financial chiefs of the two nations that were initiated by the former administration of U.S. President George W. Bush. President Barack Obama's administration has regularized and broadened these discussions to include diplomatic and security dimensions.

Obama said in his opening speech Monday, "The relationship between the United States and China will shape the 21st century." There is weighty meaning behind these words.

With the United States and China now being called the "G-2," Obama's remark expresses the determination of the two countries to play an important role for peace and stability in the international community, in addition to the world economy.

By placing priority on China, which is getting economically stronger, the United States aims to have China share responsibility within the international community.

Meanwhile, China seems to be exercising influence on the United States by trumpeting the fact that it has become the largest holder of U.S. Treasury securities.


Doing business together

It is true that many tasks cannot be solved unless the United States and China--which are strengthening their economic interdependence--act together. However, there is still much diplomatic and military friction between the two. It will be worth watching how the future U.S.-China relationship will unfold against the backdrop of both cooperation and tension.

The joint statement said, at first in the economic field, that corrections should be made to the trade imbalance, which sees U.S. deficits against China continuing to balloon, and that cooperation should be aimed at achieving steady growth.

In light of the issues besetting the two countries, it is not surprising that among key tasks for future scrutiny are the United States' overconsumption and China's domestic-demand expansion policies that are being spurred by its own increased consumption.

Also included was the issue of U.S. budget deficit reduction, as China would like to see a restoration of fiscal soundness and a stable U.S. dollar. If the United States reduces its budget deficit, this will help the world economy, including Japan, as it attempts to overcome the financial crisis.


Other issues on table

Regarding global warming, the two nations--the two largest emitters of greenhouse gases--agreed to create a framework of dialogue. It is impossible to achieve significant reductions in greenhouse gases unless these two nations work to tackle the issue.

Regarding the suspended six-party talks on North Korea's denuclearization, the two nations affirmed that it is important to see a resumption of the talks and agreed to continue working toward denuclearization.

The United States and China emphasized the importance of implementing the U.N. sanctions resolution against North Korea, which aggressively conducted a nuclear test. The United States appeared to be urging the Chinese side to again implement sanctions on North Korea.

The two nations also discussed how to handle antiterrorism measures and strengthen cooperation toward nuclear disarmament.

Although the issue of human rights was taken up, the statement failed to refer to China's ethnic minority issue, including the bloody violence in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, or issues surrounding Taiwan.

Such issues as the financial crisis, global warming and North Korea are important tasks directly linked to Japan's national interests. In addition to cooperating closely with the United States, Japan also needs to continuously call on China to play a responsible role.

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, July 30, 2009)
(2009年7月30日01時16分  読売新聞)


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