A conversation with Minister Xu Xueyuan, Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Washington

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This week on Sinica, Kaiser chats with Minister Xu Xueyuan, Deputy Chief of Mission at the PRC Embassy in Washington, D.C.

A few words about the process, in the interest of transparency:

Minister Xu’s team did request questions in advance, and they were all accepted without alteration except to suggest that two questions, both related to public diplomacy efforts, be combined. Questions on subjects like Taiwan, Xinjiang, and China’s Zero-COVID policy were all accepted without even any suggestions on changes of wording. Kaiser was also able to follow up on questions without any objection at all.

Where Minister Xu cited numbers and made factual claims, we made a good faith effort to check them — for example, on the number of acres in the recent offshore oil lease approvals made by the Biden administration.

Doubtless, there will be listeners who will wish that Kaiser had been more forceful, and there may be some who believe I was perhaps too forceful. Sinica is not a “gotcha” show and never has been, and we believe there is value in hearing the perspectives of a ranking Chinese diplomat, and we hope you agree that the interview is very much worth listening to.

The interview has only been edited only for clarity and concision — taking out filler or hesitation words and pick-ups.

2:56 – Does the Biden administration’s China policy diverge from Trump's?

8:29 – China’s role in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization

15:09 – China’s position on the Ukraine war

19:21 – How the Ukraine conflict factors into Beijing’s decision-making on Taiwan

23:11 – The diminishing appeal of “one country, two systems”

29:56 – Beijing’s suspension of climate talks after the Pelosi visit

38:20 – U.S.-China coordination on alleviating global economic issues

46:37 – The possibility of diplomatic concessions to improve relations

52:29 –The decline in people-to-people exchange between China and the U.S.

1:00:27 – China’s Dynamic Zero-COVID policy

1:08:16 – The 20th Party Congress’ impact on U.S.-China relations

1:10:51 – Considering the Xinjiang issue from the American perspective

1:20:10 – The unintended consequences of wolf-warrior diplomacy

1:24:45 – Differing views on China in the Global South vs. Global North

A full transcript of this interview is available at thechinaproject.com.

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