China-US strategic dialogue to solidify gains from Xi-Obama summit

By Liu Yunlong Source:Global Times Published: 2013-7-10 0:23:01

China and the US will hold their fifth Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED) in Washington on Wednesday and Thursday, consolidating the consensus formed at Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Barack Obama's meeting in California in June.

Cui Tiankai, Chinese ambassador to the US, said Sunday that the upcoming S&ED will produce positive results under the guidance of the consensus on building a new type of major-country relationship reached during last month's summit.

The S&ED aims to promote the major-country relationship, while focusing on the big picture but also handling detailed issues involving relations between China and the US, said Tao Wenzhao, a research fellow of the Institute of American Studies under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

During the dialogue, senior officials from more than 20 departments and ministries of both countries will hold a series of talks on a wide range of topics including trade, energy, climate change, cyber security, and Asia Pacific cooperation.

Among some 90 discussion mechanisms established between the two countries, the S&ED is critical, said Jin Canrong, deputy director of the School of International Studies with the Renmin University of China (RUC), adding that the talks manage part of the crisis and expands the opportunities for cooperation.

Shi Yinhong, director of the Center on American Studies at the RUC, told the Global Times that the focuses of the strategic and economic dialogues are quite different.

"The strategic dialogue focuses on strategic topics, mostly contradictions, such as inter-Korean relations, cyber security and South China Sea disputes," Shi said. "While the economic issue should be treated as a kind of strategic issue with more cooperation involved, which would help ease conflicts. The two dialogues used to be separated and were first combined in 2009," said Shi. "Putting them together reflects the uniqueness of China-US relations."

"Clearing bilateral investment barriers will be a key economic topic on the dialogue agenda," Pan Rui, a professor with the Center for American Studies at Fudan University in Shanghai, told the Global Times, adding that China has always been concerned about the barriers set by the US government for investing by citing the excuse of national security.

"Similarly, the US has its own concerns in injecting money into China such as intellectual property rights and market admittance," Pan noted.

"There have been many reports that both sides will negotiate a bilateral investment treaty during the dialogue," said Pan. "If the two sides could come to an agreement, it would bring a bright future for free trade."

"It is impossible to reach a wide consensus in only two days. We should stay cautiously optimistic," added Shi.

Agencies contributed to this story


Posted in: Diplomacy

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