Xi and Biden greeted one another with a handshake at a luxurious resort resort in Indonesia, the place they’re attending the Group of 20 summit of enormous economies, earlier than they sat down for what was anticipated to be a dialog lasting a number of hours.
“Because the leaders of our two nations, we share accountability, in my opinion, to indicate that China and the US can handle our variations, stop competitors from changing into something ever close to battle, and to search out methods to work collectively on pressing world points that require our mutual cooperation,” Biden stated to open the assembly.
Xi stated he hoped they’d “chart the fitting course for the China-US relationship” and that he was ready for a “candid and in-depth alternate of views” with Biden.
Each males entered the extremely anticipated assembly with bolstered political standing at residence. Democrats triumphantly held onto management of the US senate, with an opportunity to spice up their ranks by one in a runoff election in Georgia subsequent month, whereas Xi was awarded a 3rd five-year time period in October by the Communist Celebration’s nationwide congress, a break with custom.
“We have now little or no misunderstanding,” Biden advised reporters in Cambodia on Sunday, the place he participated in a gathering of southeast Asian nations earlier than leaving for Indonesia. “We simply bought to determine the place the pink strains are and … what are an important issues to every of us going into the subsequent two years.”
Biden added: “His circumstance has modified, to state the plain, at residence.” The president stated of his personal scenario: “I do know I’m coming in stronger.”
White Home aides have repeatedly sought to minimize any notion of battle between the 2 nations and have emphasised that they consider the international locations can work in tandem on shared challenges resembling local weather change and well being safety.
However relations have grown extra strained below successive American administrations, as financial, commerce, human rights and safety variations have come to the fore.
As president, Biden has repeatedly taken China to job for human rights abuses towards the Uighur folks and different ethnic minorities, crackdowns on democracy activists in Hong Kong, coercive commerce practices, navy provocations towards self-ruled Taiwan and variations over Russia’s prosecution of its conflict towards Ukraine. Chinese language officers have largely shunned public criticism of Russia’s conflict, though Beijing has prevented direct assist, resembling supplying arms.
Taiwan has emerged as some of the contentious points between Washington and Beijing. A number of occasions in his presidency, Biden has stated the US would defend the island — which China has eyed for eventual unification — in case of a Beijing-led invasion. However administration officers have careworn every time that the US’s “One China” coverage has not modified. That coverage acknowledges the federal government in Beijing whereas permitting for casual relations and protection ties with Taipei, and its posture of “strategic ambiguity” over whether or not it might reply militarily if the island have been attacked.
Tensions flared even larger when Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., visited Taiwan in August, prompting China to retaliate with navy drills and the firing of ballistic missiles into close by waters.
The Biden administration additionally blocked exports of superior laptop chips to China final month — a nationwide safety transfer that bolsters U.S. competitors towards Beijing. Chinese language officers rapidly condemned the restrictions.
And although the 2 males have held 5 telephone or video calls throughout Biden’s presidency, White Home officers say these encounters aren’t any substitute for Biden with the ability to meet Xi in particular person. That job is all of the extra necessary after Xi strengthened his grip on energy by the occasion congress, as lower-level Chinese language officers have been unable or unwilling to talk for his or her chief.
Earlier than the assembly, Chinese language international ministry spokesperson Mao Ning had stated China was dedicated to peaceable coexistence however would firmly defend its sovereignty, safety and improvement pursuits.
“It’s important that the US work along with China to correctly handle variations, advance mutually useful cooperation, keep away from misunderstanding and miscalculation, and convey China-US relations again to the fitting monitor of sound and regular improvement,” she stated at a day by day briefing in Beijing.
Xi has stayed near residence all through the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, the place he has enforced a “zero-Covid” coverage with mass lockdowns which have roiled world provide chains.
He made his first journey exterior China since begin of the pandemic in September with a cease in Kazakhstan after which onto Uzbekistan to take part within the eight-nation Shanghai Cooperation Group with Putin and different leaders of the Central Asian safety group.
White Home officers and their Chinese language counterparts have spent weeks negotiating particulars of the assembly, which was held at Xi’s resort with translators offering simultaneous interpretation by headsets.
US officers have been wanting to see how Xi approaches the Biden sit-down after consolidating his place because the unquestioned chief of the state, saying they’d wait to evaluate whether or not that made him kind of more likely to search out areas of cooperation with the U.S.
Biden and Xi every introduced small delegations into the dialogue. US officers anticipated Xi would carry newly elevated authorities officers and expressed hope that it may result in extra substantive engagements down the road.
Earlier than assembly with Xi, Biden held talks with Indonesian President Joko Widodo, the G20 host, to announce a spread of recent improvement initiatives for the archipelago nation, together with investments in local weather, safety, and schooling.
A lot of Biden’s conversations and engagements throughout a three-country tour — which took him to Egypt and Cambodia earlier than he landed on the island of Bali on Sunday — have been, by design, making ready him for the assembly with Xi and sending a sign that the US would compete in areas the place Xi has additionally labored to increase his nation’s affect.
The 2 males have a historical past that dates to their service as their nation’s vice chairman. The US president has emphasised that he is aware of Xi nicely and needs to make use of the assembly to raised perceive the place they stand.
Biden has tucked references to his conversations with Xi into his remarks as he traveled across the US earlier than the Nov. 8 elections, utilizing the Chinese language chief’s desire for autocratic governance to make his personal case to voters for why democracy ought to prevail.
The president’s view was considerably validated on the worldwide stage, as White Home aides stated a number of world leaders approached Biden throughout his time in Cambodia — the place he was assembly with Asian allies to reassure them of the US dedication to the area within the face of China’s assertive actions — to inform him they watched the end result of the midterm elections intently and that the outcomes have been a triumph for democracy.