Benjamin Peng

Why China can Play a Bigger Role in Middle East Peace Progress with Business Measure

Israeli president Shimon Peres is visiting China, this visit will further boost the bilateral cooperation and relationship in economic and other areas in the wake of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit last year, it’s quite rare for a small country like Israel that the top national leaders consecutively visit China within a year, and mainly for business purpose. It also manifests that China is attaching a lot of importance to Israel as well.

For Israel, not only the government, but also the corporations see China as a strategic significance to them, I can conclude this since some Israeli companies executives told me about this when I’m visiting Israel at present.

It’s rather understandable that a large number of Israeli start-ups yearning for the huge market of China, and China can also take advantage of Israeli technology and innovations to upscale its industries. China does also emphasize the strategic importance of Israel, as it is the geopolitical junction of Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

As is known to all, China has traditional good relationship with Arabic countries and Iran, mainly in trading and political area. Given the sensitive tension between Israel and Arabic counties and Iran, it seems that being friendly with Israel means unfriendly with Muslim countries, but I don’t agree. Because China will strike a perfect balance on these inter-national relationships, and China never adopt double standards in it’s diplomatic policies, and China will continually maintain the good relationship with their Arabic countries and Iran, China has no history of joining a new coalition and abandoning old ally, it always keep an relatively independent diplomatic policies over the past decades.

China has been maintaining its relatively neutral interactions with both the Arabic countries and Israel over the past decades. China also has no history of anti-Semitism or collision with Muslim world, and China does’t have ideology preference with regard to the Jewish-Muslim confliction, it can be a good mediator for Middle East. China can hence leverage its investment in the region to boost business interactions and economic alliances with Israel and Arabic countries.

I believe China will exert a delicate finesse in the Middle East Peace Progress with business and trade manners, unlike America, China will not involve it too much in the political agenda of this issue because it’s really difficult and headache for any country who wants to help in political way, and China always pursues non-intervene policies in other nation or regional affairs. But China could be a good mediator in case of the Middle East crisis.

Business or non-governmental channel is good way to improving international relationship, as every country needs to improve their people’s life and avoid economic destitution, so they also need to cooperate with each other in business and trade, when the business relationship is established, the inter-national relationship will be improved accordingly, if they have good business relationship in different areas, there will be no reason to be hostile to each other. Sustainable business relationship will bring about good diplomatic ties.

Nevertheless, It takes time to archive this economic prosperity and political harmony for Israel-Arab, from the perspective of business, we need to be open and optimistic about this, just spurn the political confliction which hurts each other and hinder people’s life standards.

Now China is developing its full-scale business relationship with Israel, there will be more and more investors and companies will come to the region in foreseeable future, not just like the trading business which many Chinese businessmen already done very well in Arabic countries, but will deepen the business cooperation which will generate some other positive peace derivatives which will include establishing cooperation with Arabic countries, it will gradually influence the Middle East Progress, so I strongly believe China can play a bigger role in the Middle East Peace Progress.

About the Author
The author is the founder of Israel Plan Organization, the NPO organization supporting and promoting Israel in China. He lived in Israel for two years, and studied MBA at IDC Herzliya.