US-China bilateral talks cover several major issues


Chinese President Xi Jinping welcomes visiting U.S. President Barack Obama at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Nov. 12, 2014. Courtesy: Xinhua.

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday outlined six priorities in building a new type of relationship with the United States during his meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama.

Xi said the priorities include the communication between high-level officials, mutual respect, cooperation in all aspects, management of disputes, collaboration in the Asia-Pacific and joint actions on global challenges. Specifically:

  • China and the U.S. should improve exchanges and communication between high-level officials in a bid to improve strategic trust. The two sides should give bilateral dialogue mechanisms better play, such as the China-U.S. Strategic and Economic Dialogue.
  • The two countries should respect each other’s sovereign and territorial integrity as well as political systems and development paths, instead of imposing one’s will and model on the other, which is the important condition and foundation for the two countries to have a healthy, stable and sustainable relationship.
  • They should deepen cooperation in all aspects including trade, military, counter-terrorism, law enforcement, energy, health and infrastructure. The cooperation should involve governments, parliaments, media, think tanks and young people.
  • The two sides should manage disputes and sensitive issues in a constructive manner. As it is inevitable to have differences, they should always resort to dialogues and consultation and do not act against each other’s core interests.
  • They should improve collaboration in the Asia-Pacific, having positive interactions, encouraging inclusive diplomacy and work for the regional peace, stability and prosperity.
  • They should jointly respond to regional and global challenges. China is willing to work with the U.S. on regional hotspots such as the Iran nuclear issue, denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and Afghanistan as well as global issues like counterterrorism, climate change and epidemic control.
Xi Jinping and Barack Obama attend a press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

Xi Jinping and Barack Obama attend a press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

Xi said he would continue to make joint efforts with Obama and keep in close contact with him. Obama said the trade ties and people-to-people exchanges between the two countries have surged over the past 35 years since the two countries established the diplomatic relations.

“We have shown that when we cooperate, United States and China can make important contributions to security and prosperity in the region and around the world,” Obama said.

After the meeting Xi said that the talks were “constructive and fruitful.”

During the press conference Xi answered a question about human rights and said China has made great achievements in human rights since the founding of New China in 1949, especially after 30 years of reform and opening-up. He said China is willing to engage in dialogues with the U.S. on human rights on the basis of equality and mutual respect.

After the talks, Xi held a welcoming banquet for Obama at the Great Hall of the People with the presence of senior Chinese leaders Yu Zhengsheng, Liu Yunshan, Wang Qishan and Zhang Gaoli.

The meeting between the two leaders covered issues ranging from military relations to Taiwan:

Military relations

Xi proposed “a new type of military relations” that suits the new relationship between China and the U.S.

Xi said that defense departments of the two countries have signed memorandums of understanding to establish mutual reporting mechanisms on major military operations and a code of safe conduct on naval and air military encounter between the two sides.

The two militaries should deepen exchanges, mutual trust and cooperation based on the two memorandums of understanding, he said.

China would like to make progress in the exchanges between senior officers, improve communications, and conduct more joint trainings and drills with the United States.

US President Barack Obama attends a meeting with China's President Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on November 12, 2014.  AFP PHOTO / Petar Kujundzic / POOL

Barack Obama attends a meeting with Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People. (AFP PHOTO)

Taiwan and Tibet

Xi urged the U.S. to follow the one-China policy and principles set by the three joint communiques between the two countries and asked the U.S. government to stop arms sales to Taiwan and support cross-Strait peace with “actual actions.”

In response, Obama assured that there has been no change of the U.S. stance on Taiwan and it does not support “Taiwan independence.”

The U.S. favors the improvement of cross-Strait relations and expects it to continue, he said.

Obama also stressed that the U.S. acknowledge Tibet as part of the People’s Republic of China and said the U.S. does not back “Tibet independence.”

Climate change

China and the U.S. also issued a joint announcement on climate change, listing ambitious goals and pledging joint efforts to tackle climate change in the next 15 years.

The United States intends to achieve “an economy-wide target of reducing its emissions by 26 to 28 percent below its 2005 level in 2025” and to make best efforts to reduce its emissions by 28 percent, according to the announcement.

China’s carbon dioxide emission is expected to hit the peak around 2030 and it intends to increase the share of non-fossil fuels in primary energy consumption to around 20 percent by 2030, according to the announcement.


Xi and Obama jointly denounced all forms of terrorism and pledged to fight terrorism together by following the Charter of the United Nations and fundamental principles in international relations.

The two countries will also improve cooperation in law enforcement, such as jointly hunting down fugitives, recovering ill-gotten assets, and fighting drug trafficking and cyber crimes.

Story compiled with the information from Xinhua News Agency.