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Xi, Obama hold talks in Beijing

Beijing: Chinese President Xi Jinping today held formal talks with his US counterpart Barack Obama, a day after the two leaders pledged to push forward a new type of major-country relations between the world's two
PTI November 12, 2014 10:36 IST
PTI

Beijing: Chinese President Xi Jinping today held formal talks with his US counterpart Barack Obama, a day after the two leaders pledged to push forward a new type of major-country relations between the world's two largest economies.

Before their talks, Xi held a red-carpet ceremony to welcome Obama, who arrived in Beijing on Monday to attend the 22nd Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders' Meeting.

Last evening, the two heads of state held a meeting at the Zhongnanhai leadership compound in central Beijing after the APEC meet.

After that meeting, the two leaders pledged to push forward a new type of major-country relations between the two countries.

Recalling their past meetings, Xi said he is glad to see that both sides have achieved considerable early harvest on their drive to build a new type of major-country relationship due to the joint efforts from both sides.

China and the United States have gained more understanding and are holding higher expectations over the concept of such a relationship, he said.

Xi said the two leaders should maintain regular and close communications and exchange candid and in-depth views on fundamental issues.

"Only in this way (could the two countries) comprehensively enhance mutual understanding, trust and respect and steer clear of strategic misjudgments," Xi said.

He called on both countries to expand pragmatic cooperation with a special focus on actively promoting path breaking collaborations.

Communication and coordination on international and regional affairs should also be enhanced, Xi said, in order to jointly contribute to world peace, stability and prosperity.

For his part, Obama noted that the US and China boast of the world's two largest economies and of two energetic and innovative peoples.

Strengthening cooperation between the two countries, which have seen their interests highly integrated, could benefit people in both countries and the world at large, Obama said.

He said he is willing to exchange views with President Xi on a wide range of issues in a timely manner and lift the new type of major-country relationship between China and the US to a higher level.

Before the meeting, the two heads of state had a walk at the Zhongnanhai leadership compound in central Beijing.

Xi had dinner with Obama and briefed him on China's efforts in comprehensively deepening reform, advancing rule of law and strengthening the building of the ruling party.

Xi told Obama that "we have found a development path suitable for China's national conditions, which is the socialist path with Chinese characteristics."

The Chinese President said that "we will unswervingly follow it."

The governments of China and the US should properly handle their differences and act as a stabilizer of bilateral relations, Xi said.

Differences between the two countries are unavoidable but they are not the mainstream of the bilateral relationship, Xi said.

China and the US have different national conditions, different history and different cultures as well as different paths of development, he said.

Xi said the two sides should understand and respect each other and live in harmony while keeping their diversities.

To understand China today and predict China in the future, one has to know China's past and culture, said Xi, adding that the "gene of traditional Chinese culture" is deeply planted in the mentality of modern Chinese and the Chinese government's governance strategy.

Obama told Xi that the US has no intention of containing China because doing that is not in its own interests, state- run Xinhua news agency reported.

The US is willing to conduct candid communication and dialogue with China, improve mutual understanding, draw on each other's experience, manage and control disagreements effectively and avoid misunderstanding and misjudgment, Obama said.

China is a partner of cooperation of the US, Obama told Xi, while noting that the US supports China's reform and opening-up efforts.

In the times of multipolarisation, Obama said, the US side welcomes a constructive role played by China in international issues and is willing to enhance exchanges and cooperation with China and jointly tackle various global challenges, promote peace and security in the Asia-Pacific region and the world.

He said he had very in-depth talks with Xi, which deepened his understanding of the situation in China and the thoughts of the Chinese government and leaders on governance.

Xi said "we should not let the new type of relations stay as a concept or stop at its early harvest. We should push it forward."

A good China-US relationship is in the interests of both countries and conducive to the Asia-Pacific and the world, Xi said, adding that leaders of both countries share this strategic understanding.

From a strategic and long-term perspective, China and the US should build their relations step by step, Xi said.

Obama told Xi that the US is ready to work with China to realise this target.