The article examines the seventy-year history of the diplomacy of the People’s Republic of China, which went through two large 30-year cycles of its development, associated with the names of Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping, the leaders of the country of the first and second generation, and Xi Jinping, which has been conducting its foreign policy since 2013. The diplomacy of Mao Zedong is characterized by such features as a strong ideological component and a strategy for joining alliances. Deng Xiaoping’s diplomacy is distinguished by its economic orientation and the strategy of not joining alliances. Xi Jinping is actively conducting “great power diplomacy” and the “belt and path” geo-economic project in the context of the formation of new structures of the system of international relations with its predominant influence. The article also explores the independent variables of China’s diplomacy. The first is the conceptualization of all diplomatic activity in the form of strategies: short-term (about 10 years) and long-term (about 30 years), with two to three years of settlement between them. Another one that has had a significant impact on the diplomacy of China over the past 40 years is its conditionality in relations with the United States, its main global partner and geopolitical competitor, to whom, due to the trade war, it has lost all strategic trust. Another feature of China’s modern diplomacy is its global nature, network-centricity, coverage of the entire world political space and a clear desire to change its status in global governance from adopting norms and rules (norm-taker) to their creation (norm-maker). Great attention is paid to the analysis of modern forms of China’s diplomacy. The article presents a Chinese view of the history and modern diplomacy of the People’s Republic of China, reflected in Chinese academic discourse, party documents and speeches of the country’s leaders. © 2021, Russian Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.