China's Mars probe mission is not designed to compete for space leadership; in fact, the universe is big enough for any country's exploration and cooperation, Wang Wenbin, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Friday.
Wang made the remarks during a routine press conference on Friday, commenting on some foreign media reports that misinterpreted China's launch of its Mars probe on Thursday as a way to enhance its capabilities to compete in space leadership.
The successful launch officially kick-started China's independent journey of exploration to Mars, which not only Chinese people take great pride in, but it has also gained attention from the international community, he said.
According to the spokesperson, international agencies including the Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization, the European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA of the US, as well as countries such as Russia, Japan and Argentina have extended congratulations to the Chinese space mission. China responded by expressing thanks to them for their kind words.
China's Mars probe is an open platform for scientific exploration. To ensure the mission's smooth undertaking, China has carried out cooperation with many countries and agencies including the ESA, France, Austria and Argentina, he noted.
The ultimate goal of China's space projects is completely peaceful, and the projects are designed to enhance humanity's knowledge of the universe; expand the space of human activities, and promote the sustainable development of human civilization, Wang told the media.
The Pacific Ocean is big enough to contain many countries in the world, and the vast universe is also big enough for multiple countries' exploration missions and cooperation, he noted.
Wang said that China is willing to carry out international cooperation in the space sector with any country under the basis of mutual respect, inclusiveness, equality and mutual benefits, and to make positive contributions to the peaceful development of space and building of a community of shared future for mankind.