Constructive strategic talks

Updated: 2013-07-09 07:10

(China Daily)

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The fifth Strategic and Economic Dialogue between China and the United States, scheduled to take place in Washington on Wednesday and Thursday, will be a good opportunity for the two countries to expand common ground, deepen mutual trust and anchor bilateral interaction on smoother terrain.

It will be the first high-level talks since the government reshuffles in both countries and the June summit between President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Barack Obama.

Officials from more than 20 government departments on both sides are expected to hold in-depth discussions on a wide spectrum of topics of mutual concern, including how to develop a new type of relationship between major countries and how to facilitate good interaction in the Asia-Pacific.

Apart from the need to coordinate macro policies on the time and pace of the US Federal Reserve's withdrawal of its extraordinary monetary measure, both sides will also hold talks on expanding bilateral trade and investment cooperation. As the world's largest and second-largest economies, the US and China have every reason to continue to cement bilateral cooperation and remove the obstacles standing in the way of closer trade ties.

Given that cybersecurity has become a major issue between the two countries, it is good to learn that a cyber working group will convene for the first time in the upcoming talks.

China's new leadership has reiterated on many occasions that it looks to build a new type of relationship between major powers, one that features, among other things, a high degree of mutual trust, reciprocal cooperation and better management of differences.

For such a forward-looking vision to prevail in China-US ties, some in Washington should discard the outdated thinking that a head-on conflict between the existing superpower and the emerging power is inevitable.

The skirmishes that have risen from time to time between the two countries can in one way or another be traced back to Washington's perception of Beijing as a rival and a target for containment in strategically and economically important regions, such as the Asia-Pacific. It is hoped the upcoming talks will help build a consensus on positive and constructive cooperation between the two countries in the region and the global arena.

(China Daily 07/09/2013 page8)