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Joe Biden and Xi Jinping’s Historic Handshake: Face-to-Face Talks Aim to Stabilize US-China Relations

Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping held in-person discussions on a bright Wednesday in California to calm the frequently heated relations between the US and China.

The first meeting in a year, saw the leaders exchange handshakes and smiles, setting the tone for discussions on critical bilateral and global issues.

US and China Addressing Tensions

President Biden opened the remarks by emphasizing the need for tensions between the two nations to avoid escalating into conflict. Echoing this sentiment, President Xi Jinping stated that turning their backs on each other was not an option for the superpowers. 

He underscored the idea that both countries could coexist on the planet, and the success of one could be an opportunity for the other.

Xi described the US-China relationship as the most critical bilateral relationship globally, emphasizing the weight of responsibility both leaders shoulder for their respective peoples, the world, and history.

He cautioned against unrealistic attempts to remodel each other, highlighting the severe consequences of conflict and confrontation.

The White House later characterized the meeting as “candid and constructive.” The leaders discussed a range of bilateral and global issues, exchanging views on areas of difference. The optimistic tone suggests a potential thaw in relations and a willingness to find common ground.

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Joe Biden and Xi Jinping  Key Agreements and Future Prospects

Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping held in-person discussions on a bright Wednesday in California to calm the frequently heated relations between the US and China.

The meeting followed the two countries’ release of a joint climate statement, demonstrating a commitment to collaborative efforts in addressing the climate crisis. 

Both leaders pledged to work closely to combat global heating, acknowledging it as one of the most significant challenges of our time. 

The statement builds hope for improved relations after years of turmoil over trade, human rights, and the future of Taiwan.

The leaders are expected to reach further agreements at the upcoming Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in San Francisco. 

These may include deals on controlling the flow of fentanyl from China to the US and the reopening of military dialogues, which have mainly been frozen since last year.

Given the upcoming elections in Taiwan and concerns about cross-strait relations, the status and future of Taiwan are likely high on the agenda

China seeks to address what it perceives as a shift in the Biden administration’s stance towards increased support for the self-governing island.

Notably, Chinese state media adopted a warmer tone towards the US ahead of the summit, emphasizing the importance of friendship. 

The joint commitment to “economy-wide” nationally determined contributions (NDCs) in the climate statement is seen as a significant step enhancing transparency in China’s emissions—a goal long advocated by the US.

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