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Xi-Biden November meeting won’t be ‘smooth sailing’: China

BEIJING (AP) — China’s foreign minister Wang Yi believes the road to an expected meeting between President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden will not be “smooth sailing” and both sides must work together to achieve results, the foreign ministry said Sunday.

Wang Yi met with Biden, as well as Secretary of State Antony Blinken and White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, during a three-day visit to Washington. Both sides agreed to work toward a bilateral meeting on the side of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco that begins November 11.

In a statement released by China’s foreign ministry summarising the discussions, Wang said the road to the bilateral meeting would not be “smooth sailing” and that they could not rely on “autopilot” to make it happen.

Wang’s visit to Washington came at a time when tensions between the countries remain high, including over US export controls on advanced technology and China’s more assertive actions in the East and South China seas.

The statement said that although there are still many issues to be resolved, both sides believe that it is both beneficial and necessary for the US and China to maintain dialogue.

The meeting is the latest in a series of high-level contacts between the two countries as they explore the possibility of stabilising an increasingly tense relationship at a time of conflict in Ukraine and Israel.

According to the foreign ministry statement, Wang also said that China and the US needed a “return to Bali,” in a reference to Xi and Biden’s meeting at a G20 summit last year, where both officials discussed issues relating to Taiwan, US-China trade tensions as well as cooperation to address issues like climate change, health and food security.

Wang said that the two countries must “eliminate interference, overcome obstacles, enhance consensus and accumulate results.”

Other issues discussed between Wang and Biden included military exchanges between the US and China, as well as financial, technological and cultural exchanges and cooperation, as well as the crises in the Middle East and Ukraine.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken shake hands with China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi after a bilateral meeting at the State Department in Washington, Thursday. PHOTO: AP