Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Thursday held a phone conversation with his Canadian counterpart Melanie Joly at the latter's request.
Wang, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, said that both China and Canada are countries with important influence in the Asia-Pacific region.
The two countries have neither historical rows nor realistic conflicts of interests, and share many common interests and enjoy complementary advantages, he said.
Wang noted that the current challenging China-Canada relationship is not what China desires, nor is caused by China, while China is open to maintain contact and dialogue with Canada.
Wang put forward three points on improving and developing China-Canada relations:
Firstly, correct cognition. The root cause of the downturn of China-Canada relations in recent years is the serious deviation of the Canadian side's perception of China.
China hopes that the Canadian side can objectively, rationally and correctly interpret China's domestic and foreign policies. China neither exports ideology nor challenges the international order, but has consistently upheld the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, the international system with the UN at its core and the international order based on international law. At the same time, China must firmly safeguard its own sovereignty, security and development interests and never allow the Chinese people to be deprived of their legitimate rights to development, Wang said.
Secondly, mutual respect. The differences in social systems and ideologies between China and Canada stem from their respective histories, cultures, national conditions and people's choices. The two sides should respect each other, engage in dialogue on an equal footing, increase trust, dispel misgivings and strengthen communication responsibly and constructively, so as not to let differences dominate bilateral relations, Wang said.
He also urged the Canadian side to earnestly implement its commitment to the one-China policy, preserve the political foundation of China-Canada relations, and not send any wrong signal to the "Taiwan independence" separatist forces.
Thirdly, win-win cooperation. China will continue to expand high-level opening-up, and Chinese-style modernization will surely bring important development opportunities to Canada and other countries in the world, Wang said.
As promoters and beneficiaries of free trade, China and Canada should jointly oppose the politicization and pan-security of economic issues and create a fair, just and non-discriminatory environment for business development, he added.
Joly, for her part, said that healthy and stable Canada-China relations serve the fundamental interests of the two countries and two peoples.
Despite the difficulties in bilateral relations, Canada is willing to bring bilateral relations back to the right track with a more open, practical and constructive attitude, and is willing to strengthen communication and dialogue with China, promote personnel exchanges, deepen economic and trade cooperation, and maintain close coordination and cooperation on environmental protection, biodiversity and international and regional issues, Joly said.