The dialogue follows a turbulent four years in US-China relations under Donald Trump, when the US became openly hostile to China and Beijing enforced its territorial claims in the South China Sea, cracked down on human rights in Hong Kong and Xinjiang , Taiwan threatened and hit Australia with $20 billion in trade strikes.
Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan agreed on Wednesday that the dialogue between Washington and Beijing is now more firmly on track. He said Xi and Biden reached “major common understandings” during their virtual summit.
“Whether they can handle the relationship well depends on the future of the world,” he told the Bloomberg forum.
“The two sides must keep the focus on cooperation and control differences to get relations between China and the US back on track.”
As part of those negotiations, White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said on Wednesday that Biden and Xi have agreed to explore the possibility of arms control talks to achieve “strategic stability.”
“You’re going to see an intensification of engagement on multiple levels to make sure there are guardrails around this match so it doesn’t turn into a conflict,” he told the Brookings Institution on Wednesday without going into details.
Kissinger said cooperation between China and the United States on nuclear proliferation is “of paramount importance”.
That urgency has increased after months of aerial harassment in the Taiwan Strait by Chinese warplanes. On Tuesday, the US and China agreed to maintain the status quo. The US reiterated that it would continue its “one China” policy, recognizing China’s claim to the democratic island, while continuing to allow informal contacts with the Taiwanese government, which operates separately from Beijing.
He was later asked whether he supported formal Taiwanese independence — something Xi warned on Tuesday that China would give a firm response — Biden said it was up to Taiwan to decide its future. “We don’t encourage independence,” he said.
Wang said China is determined to keep its economy open. “China cannot develop in isolation from the world, and the world cannot develop without China,” Wang said. “Openness brings progress, isolation leads to backwardness.”