China Silent as World Leaders Congratulate Biden-Harris on Victory

Several speculate whether Beijing is waiting for the outgoing president to concede defeat.

Published
FIFA World Cup 2018
2 min read
A file photo of Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump.
i

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that China would act in "accordance with international practice," when asked questions on when it would congratulate United States President-elect Joe Biden on his election victory.

Over 24 hours after US media declared Biden victorious, China remains one of the few major countries yet to congratulate Biden and his team on their electoral defeat of Donald Trump.

Several speculate whether officials there are waiting for the outgoing president to concede defeat.

Ever since the announcement of victory, good wishes have been streaming in for Biden-Harris by world leaders.

"We understand that the outcome of the general election will be determined in accordance with the laws and procedures of the United States," said Wang Wenbin, China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson, clarifying that the state has "noted" Biden's declaration of victory.

"We will handle the issue of the statement (of congratulations) in accordance with international practice."

Beijing's unwillingness to congratulate Biden may stem from caution, as it may want to avoid anything that could further destabilise US-China relations.

There has been marked optimism in China's state-run media that a Biden presidency may restore and re-build US-China relations, which have deteriorated during Trump's time in office.

In an editorial published on Sunday, 8 November, state-run newspaper China Daily said that relations could be "reset for the better," especially on trade, where the two countries have waged an economically damaging two-year long trade war with no end in sight.

"By adhering to this approach and strengthening the ballast of their trade ties, the two countries can regain the generally positive momentum that has characterised their relations over the past four decades," the editorial stated.

Another state-backed Chinese newspaper, Global Times, wrote "drop illusions over China-US relations, but don't give up efforts,". It recommended that Beijing "communicate with the Biden team as thoroughly as it can, making greater joint efforts to recover China-US relations to a state of great predictability."

Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!