For the first time after Joe Biden became president of the United States, the US president will meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Indonesia.
Washington is seeking to establish “frameworks and controls” for relations with Beijing, which in return is looking forward to the return of those relations to their previous state.
The two presidents are scheduled to hold talks in Bali, ahead of the annual G20 summit of the world’s major economies.
The meeting of Biden and Jinping comes at a time when the two countries with the two largest economies in the world are competing for international supremacy.
The competition between the two powers is intensifying with the growth of Chinese influence and Beijing showing more insistence on changing the American-led world order that has prevailed since World War II.
The Chinese president arrived in Bali after midday on Monday, on his second trip outside his country since the outbreak of the epidemic.
During a brief visit to Cambodia, the US president told his Asian counterparts that he wanted to ensure that competition with China did not turn into conflict.
Biden said the meeting should draw “red lines” for both countries, as well as clear frameworks and controls for the way, a senior White House official told reporters hours before the summit.
Observers expect that Biden will push China to put pressure on its ally, North Korea, after the latter conducted a record number of missile tests, amid fears that Pyongyang would conduct its seventh nuclear test.
Today’s talks are expected to focus on Taiwan and China’s military activity in the western Pacific, as well as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Beijing wants Washington to “cooperate with China,” according to Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning, who called on the United States to “appropriately consider differences, promote mutually beneficial cooperation, and avoid misunderstandings and miscalculations in order to restore US-China relations.” to its previous level and achieve healthy and stable growth.
Biden and Xi have met via video conference technology five times since Biden took over the presidency. But the last time Xi met face to face with a US president was in 2019 when Donald Trump was president of the United States.
The Biden-Xi meeting comes after the latter secured his position as leader of the Chinese Communist Party for a historic third term. The meeting also comes after the Democrats, led by Biden, achieved better than expected results in the US midterm elections.
Relations between China and the United States hit an all-time low after a visit to Taiwan by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. A visit that angered Beijing.