San Francisco. President Joe Biden and his counterpart Xi Jinping are set to meet on Wednesday in hopes of stabilizing US-China relations. But the US president is willing to take on complex issues such as trade, Beijing’s relationship with Iran and human rights concerns. The two leaders will meet on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Regional Leaders Conference. They last spoke a year ago. Already strained relations between the two countries worsened after the US shot down a Chinese spy balloon. India will also be watching this meeting as the US and India are strategic partners against China on many fronts. America has preferred India over China in many businesses.
Biden and Xi are currently in California for the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum. According to senior Biden administration officials, the two leaders will hold face-to-face talks at the Filoli estate, about 40 kilometers south of San Francisco. However, officials did not provide many details about the venue of the talks as it has not yet been confirmed by the White House or the Chinese government due to tight security.
Both leaders are trying to show the world that the US and China, despite being economic rivals, are not in a win-lose competition with global implications. Their relationship has been defined by differences over issues such as export controls, Taiwan and disputes in West Asia and Europe. Biden could send a message to Xi at the meeting that China should use its influence to clearly tell Iran that it should not take any steps that could escalate the Israel-Hamas war. The Biden administration views China as a well-wisher of Iran, a major supporter of Hamas. Biden on Tuesday called the meeting an opportunity for the two countries to once again return to normal dialogue.
First published: November 15, 2023, 20:10 IST