Chinese Ambassador to Bangladesh Li Jiming said the United States has been trying to force a wedge between China and Bangladesh by reinforcing its efforts to persuade the latter to join its anti-China campaign.
Ambassador Li in an interview said the US still retains an obsolete notion of "either friend or foe," opposes multilateralism and the correct notion of mutual prosperity, reported the Global Times.
He also said the US openly coerces countries in all regions of the world to choose sides when they form bilateral ties with China.
He emphasised that the recent meetings of US officials with Bangladesh government officials showed that the US has made continuous moves with ulterior motives.
However, Ambassador Li said recent years have witnessed China-Bangladesh bilateral cooperation deepening.
Analysing whether the diplomacy of Bangladesh faces the reality of having to choose a side, Li said China continually pursues an independent foreign policy of peace, and that there are no fundamental disputes with any particular nation, including the United States and India.
"I have found that Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has clearly expressed support for multilateralism and the UN-centred form of international governance at a recent UN meeting," the ambassador said.
This completely demonstrates that Bangladesh will preserve its strategic resolve and continue to adhere to multilateralism, advocate win-win cooperation and safeguard the mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Bangladesh.
"As the Covid-19 pandemic has intensified the international situation, increasingly severe China-US tensions and the outbreak of China-India border conflicts have triggered some changes in Bangladesh's external situation, which would eventually bring pressure on its foreign exchange from the US and other parties," Li said.
The Ambassador also stressed that China has the wisdom and capacity to avoid the so-called "Thucydides Trap" and encourage some anti-China politicians in the US to abandon their obsolete mindset of the Cold War and zero-sum game.
"Ultimately, the US will have more citizens of understanding who will be able to interpret China and China-US relations correctly, and drive bilateral relations back to the right direction of collaboration, cooperation and stability and actively contribute to global growth," he added.
China and Bangladesh's infinite potential
Ambassador Li Jiming said China and Bangladesh have sustained a good relationship over the last 45 years.
He said since the establishment of diplomatic relations, practical cooperation in the fields of economy, trade and investment has been steadily deepened, and the number of cultural exchanges has increased.
China's and Bangladesh's economies are highly complementary and have great cooperation potential.
The ambassador reiterated that Chinese companies have undertaken a series of major infrastructure projects in the transport, energy and power, telecommunications and other sectors of Bangladesh, contributing positively to the economic and social growth of the two countries.
Railway programmes have been, in fact, the main field of bilateral cooperation. However, the largest project in Bangladesh, funded by a preferential loan from the Chinese government is the $3.14 billion Padma Bridge Rail Link project.
Ambassador Li said China's implementation of various projects has directly played an essential role in developing Bangladesh's economy, its society, and peoples' livelihoods.
"Bangladesh is one of the Asia-Pacific region's fastest growing nations, and one of the most competitive countries for economic growth in the world. It has an abundance of labour capital and an extensive market, but its infrastructure is severely inadequate," said Li.
As China continues its opening-up expansion, under the BRI, by various means, such as preferential loans, funding, project contracts and free assistance, China will continue to support Bangladesh's infrastructure development.
More Chinese investors will be involved in the economic construction of Bangladesh in the future, Li explained.
The scope for future cooperation between China and Bangladesh is likely to be very broad on the basis of the developmental advantages of this bilateral investment cooperation.
With Bangladesh's ongoing economic and social growth, China and Bangladesh will have more prospects for high-tech investment cooperation, such as 5G, high-speed rail, aerospace, and the Blue Economy.
Ambassador Li also said China and Bangladesh should also discuss how to work together to tackle climate change, reduce poverty, medical and health care, and improve human capital.