President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. spoke today with President Xi Jinping of China. The President shared his greetings and well wishes with the Chinese people on the occasion of Lunar New Year. President Biden affirmed his priorities of protecting the American people’s security, prosperity, health, and way of life, and preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific. President Biden underscored his fundamental concerns about Beijing’s coercive and unfair economic practices, crackdown in Hong Kong, human rights abuses in Xinjiang, and increasingly assertive actions in the region, including toward Taiwan. The two leaders also exchanged views on countering the COVID-19 pandemic, and the shared challenges of global health security, climate change, and preventing weapons proliferation. President Biden committed to pursuing practical, results-oriented engagements when it advances the interests of the American people and those of our allies.
Xi pointed out that the restoration and growth of China-U.S. relations has been the most important development in international relations over the past half century and more.
Despite various twists and difficulties, he added, the relationship has on the whole kept moving forward and delivered enormous benefits to the Chinese and American peoples and contributed to global peace, stability and prosperity.
Xi stressed that China and the United States both gain from cooperation and lose from confrontation; cooperation is the only right choice for both sides.
When China and the United States work together, they can accomplish a great deal for the good of both countries and the world at large; confrontation between the two countries, however, will definitely be disastrous for both countries and the world, he added.
Emphasizing that the China-U.S. relationship is currently at an important juncture, Xi said it is the common desire of both peoples and the wider international community to see the sound and stable development of China-U.S. relations.
“You have said that America can be defined in one word: Possibilities. We hope the possibilities will now point toward an improvement of China-U.S. relations,” Xi said to Biden.
The two countries, he suggested, should make joint efforts in the same direction, follow the spirit of no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, focus on cooperation, manage their differences, and work for the sound and stable development of China-U.S. relations.
In this way, they can deliver more tangible benefits to people in both countries, and make their due contribution to fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, promoting world economic recovery and maintaining regional peace and stability, Xi added.
Xi emphasized that while the two sides may differ on some issues, it is crucial to show mutual respect, treat each other as equals, and properly manage and handle the differences in a constructive fashion.
The foreign affairs departments of the two countries may have in-depth communications on wide-ranging matters in the bilateral relationship and major international and regional issues, and the economic, financial, law enforcement and military authorities of the two countries may also have more contacts, Xi said.
The two sides should re-establish the various dialogue mechanisms, read each other’s policy intentions accurately, and avoid misunderstanding and miscalculation, he said, adding that it is important to manage differences where they exist and jointly pursue cooperation where it is desirable to do so.
The Taiwan question and issues relating to Hong Kong, Xinjiang, etc. are China’s internal affairs and concern China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and the U.S. side should respect China’s core interests and act prudently, Xi stressed.
Xi emphasized that confronting a highly uncertain international situation, China and the United States shoulder special international responsibilities and obligations as permanent members of the United Nations Security Council.
The two sides, he added, should act to conform to the trend of the world, jointly safeguard peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region, and make historic contributions to promoting world peace and development.
Biden, for his part, noted that China has a long history and a great culture and the Chinese people are a great people.
The United States and China must avoid conflict and they may work together on climate change and many other issues, he added.
The U.S. side, he said, is prepared to have candid and constructive dialogue with the Chinese side in the spirit of mutual respect and to improve mutual understanding and avoid miscommunication and miscalculation.
The two presidents agreed that their phone conversation today will send a positive signal to the world and the two sides will maintain close communication on China-U.S. relations and issues of mutual interest. Enditem