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Xi-Obama summit opens new chapter in trans-Pacific cooperation

Source:Xinhua Published: 2013-6-9 15:39:54

During their first summit, Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Barack Obama increased mutual trust, reached consensus on an array of issues and mapped out a blueprint for China-US ties, and these achievements signal the opening of a new chapter in cooperation across the Pacific Ocean, Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi said Saturday.

During the June 7-8 summit, the two leaders have had over eight hours of talks, covering a wide range of topics such as the two countries' respective domestic situation and governance, bilateral issues as well as global ones, said Yang.

They discussed cooperation but never shied away from differences, Yang said, adding that both the length and the depth of the two leaders' interaction this time were unprecedented, showcasing the great importance the two sides have attached to their relationship.

The state councilor said the two leaders agreed to make joint efforts for achieving pragmatic outcomes at the next meetings of the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue as well as the high-level China-US Consultation on People-to-People Exchange scheduled for this summer.

Chinese foreign and defense ministers will visit the United States at the invitations of the US side at appropriate times, according to Yang.

China, at the invitation of the United States, will also attend the US-hosted Rim of the Pacific exercises (RIMPAC) in 2014, he said.

Construction of new type relations

During the summit, Xi summarized the concept of new type relations between the two nations in three phrases -- "no conflict and no confrontation," "mutual respect" and "cooperation toward win-win results," said Yang.

Xi also put forward a four-point proposal for building a new type of relations between the two countries.

First of all, the two sides need to elevate the level of dialogue and mutual trust and institutionalize the meetings between leaders of the two nations at multilateral venues such as the Group of 20 and the Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, while making good use of the existing over 90 dialogue and communication mechanisms between the two governments.

Secondly, to open a new horizon for pragmatic cooperation, Washington should take active steps to relax restrictions on hi-tech exports to China and improve the bilateral trade and investment structures toward a more balanced future.

Thirdly, to create a new mode of interaction between major countries, the two sides need to maintain close coordination and collaboration on the Korean Peninsula, Afghanistan and other global hotspot issues, and work more closely on issues such as crackdown on piracy and transnational crimes, peacekeeping tasks, disaster relief, cyber security, climate change and space security.

Last, the two sides need to find a new way to manage their difference and actively foster a new type of military relations in accordance with the new type of inter-power ties.

According to Yang, Obama responded actively to the proposal, saying that the US side placed high importance on its relations with China and is willing to construct a new state-to-state cooperation modal with China based on mutual benefit and mutual respect, so as to jointly meet various global challenges.

Joint efforts on trade, climate change and cyber security

The two leader agreed to maintain coordination and cooperation under the frameworks like the Group of 20, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, improve global economic governance, and jointly promote the strong, sustainable and balanced growth of global economy.

They vowed to exert the functions of existing mechanisms such as the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue, China-US Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade, and the China-US Governors Forum to enhance policy coordination and pragmatic cooperation, said Yang.

Both sides hailed the recently-held 9th round of negotiations on a bilateral investment accord and agreed to create fair, transparent and stable policy frameworks for mutual investment. The Chinese side hopes that Washington will provide a fair environment for Chinese enterprises investing in the United States. They also agreed to expand trade and economic ties at local levels.

On trade frictions, both leaders agreed that dialogue and cooperation should serve as the way to handle such issues.

Yang also said the two leaders also agreed to work closely to address climate change and reduce the production and consumption of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

The two sides agreed to bolster coordination and pragmatic cooperation on climate change via the bilateral working group on the issue, Yang said.

They also vowed to work with other nations via multilateral mechanisms, including using expertise and institutions of the Montreal Protocol, to gradually reduce the production and consumption of HFCs and continue to include HFCs within the boundary of the related emission reports and calculation clauses of the Kyoto Protocol and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

According to Yang, during the summit, the Chinese side said that China opposes hacker or cyber attack in all forms, and is itself a victim.

China and the United States face common challenges when it comes to the issue of cyber security, which should be a new highlight of bilateral cooperation instead of a source of suspicion and friction.

The two countries have agreed to strengthen dialogue, coordination and cooperation through the already-established cyber working group.

Both sides also pledged to help promote the establishment of a fair, democratic and transparent global internet management mechanism mainly through the United Nations so as to build a peaceful, secure, open and cooperative cyberspace, said Yang.

The two leaders have also exchanged views on issues of intellectual property rights protection and human rights, Yang said.

The Chinese side said the Chinese government attaches great importance to the protection of intellectual property rights, and will make greater efforts to improve relevant laws and strengthen law enforcement.

During the summit, the Chinese side said the RMB yuan exchange rate is approaching the equilibrium segment, and Beijing will continue to pursue reform of the RMB exchange rate formation mechanism.

The Chinese side also pointed out that the RMB exchange rate is not the cause of the China-US trade imbalance.

Coordination in Asia-Pacific

The two leaders have agreed to maintain close communication and coordination on regional hotshot issues, said Yang.

During his talks with Obama, Xi reaffirmed China's persistence in keeping peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and in realizing denuclearization there.

China adheres to the principle that the issue be solved through dialogue and consultation and it will continue to make unremitting efforts toward a solution, Xi said.

The respective stance and overall objective by China and the United States in this regard are in accord, the Chinese president said, adding that China is willing to maintain close communication and cooperation with the US side over the issue.

Xi also expounded on China's stance on Diaoyu Islands and the South China Sea. He reaffirmed that China is determined to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity while adhering to solving relevant issues through dialogue.

He urged relevant parties to adopt a responsible attitude, stop provocation and return to talks as early as possible so as to properly solve the issues.

The two leaders also agreed to support regional economic integration in the Asia-Pacific, to promote regional connectivity, and to enhance cooperation in multilateral regional frameworks, Yang said.

During the summit, Xi also reaffirmed China's stance on Taiwan and stressed that the issue of Taiwan involves China's core interests and the national sentiment of the 1.3 billion Chinese people.

He hoped that the US side adheres to the three China-US communiques and one-China policy, stops arms sales to Taiwan and supports the peaceful development of cross-Strait relations with concrete actions.

"To sum it up, the Xi-Obama summit is of strategic, constructive and historic significance and will have a positive impact on the future development of China-US ties and on the peace, stability and prosperity in the region and across the world as well," said Yang.

Posted in: Diplomacy