Meeting in Zurich to warm economic relations between Beijing and Washington
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen plans to visit China soon, Washington said, as the two countries sought to warm relations after a “constructive” meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He in Switzerland on Wednesday.
The US Treasury said in a statement that they “exchanged views on macroeconomic and financial developments” and, citing a “constructive conversation”, said they agreed on the importance of “further strengthening” communication on economic issues for the world economy. development.
“He looks forward to visiting China in the near future and hosting his colleagues in the United States,” the statement said, without giving a date.
Ms. Yellen said she was “welcome” to visit China “at an appropriate time this year,” while Mr. Liu, China’s official news agency Xinhua, said he also spoke of “constructive discussions.”
After three remote interviews, Janet Yellen and Liu He met in person for the first time since taking office in Zurich, when many political leaders were in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum.
“Faced with a complex global economic picture, there is an urgent need for the world’s two largest economies to closely communicate with global macroeconomic and financial conditions and exchange ideas on how to respond to various challenges,” the American minister told reporters. before these discussions.
Referring to the meeting between US Presidents Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Bali in November, Ms. Yellen acknowledged that the US and China have “points of disagreement” but insisted that the two countries must come to an agreement. Don’t let misunderstandings, especially those stemming from a lack of communication, unnecessarily spoil your relationship.
– “More solutions than problems” –
Recalling the November meeting between American and Chinese leaders, Liu He, who like Ms Yellen, said he wanted to ensure “serious communication” and “coordination on macroeconomic issues, climate change and other issues of concern”.
On the eve of the discussions in Zurich, China answered Deputy Prime Minister Janet Yellen through an interpreter in front of the press: “Right now, it seems we are facing problems.” “But as President Xi said, […] There are always more solutions than problems,” he added.
He called for differences of opinion to be resolved “appropriately”, adding that “no matter how circumstances change, we must always continue the dialogue”.
The rivalry between the two major economic powers has intensified over the past three years, but peaked last August after then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, which Beijing considers part of its territory. Beijing then began military maneuvers on an unprecedented scale around the island.
In a sign that the two superpowers are trying to warm their relationship, a US official confirmed on Tuesday that US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken will visit China on February 5 and 6, the first such visit since his visit. Republican predecessor Mike Pompeo in October 2018.
The White House announced this after lengthy talks between the presidents of the United States and China in Bali, where the two leaders called for calm, but the dates were not officially announced at the time.
After Zurich, Janet Yellen will visit Senegal, Zambia and South Africa to strengthen economic ties between those countries and the United States as China gains power in Africa.