On Thursday night, Biden talked to Chinese President Xi Jinping, aiming to set “parameters” and “guardrails” in the relationship between the United States and China. This occurred to ensure that stiff competition between the two nations will not result in conflict.
Biden talked about “strategic discussions” and considered areas of conflict between the U.S. and China
According to senior administration officials, Biden spoke with Xi Jinping through phone late Thursday night to talk about “strategic discussions.” During these discussions, they considered areas of conflict in perspectives, values, and interests between the U.S. and China.
President Joe Biden spoke by phone with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, the White House said, with both leaders discussing the need to avoid letting competition between the world's two largest economies veer into conflict https://t.co/mIknBmz083 pic.twitter.com/OPbC2SBpHR
— Reuters (@Reuters) September 10, 2021
The White House noted both parties agreed to tackle the issues straightforwardly and openly. They likewise emphasized Biden made it clear that the discussion was in accordance with the ongoing effort of the United States to responsibly handle the competition between the U.S. and China.
In addition to this, the White House also mentioned Biden emphasized the enduring interest of the United States for peace, prosperity, and stability within the Indo-Pacific region and all over the world.
The two leaders also talked about the responsibility both nations have in making sure the present competition they have does not turn into conflict. The phone call lasted around 90 minutes and Biden took it from his White House residence.
According to a senior official, the tone of the call was “candid” and “familiar,” the same as the conversations the two leaders had in the past. The Biden official added that Biden and Xi talked about the significance of leaders being able to have private calls.
NEWS: Biden and Xi held their second phone call tonight. The discussion was initiated by President Biden after lower-level talks with PRC officials over the last few months were not fruitful and the U.S. got frustrated by Beijing’s lack of serious engagement, per admin official.
— Jenny Leonard (@jendeben) September 10, 2021
Another senior official noted the administration engaged with Chinese officials on multiple occasions since Biden had his first conversation with Xi Jinping back in February. However, they claimed the Chinese officials were not serious about the diplomatic meeting.
Biden explained with Xi the importance of maintaining open communication
The official also mentioned the “parameters” that Biden presented in the call. These parameters entail the importance of creating open communication and the ability to address where their interests meet and their values contradict.
These aspects are what the Biden administration thinks is important when it comes to handling competition, the senior official said. The official also added that staying transparent and clear about intentions and priorities is necessary in order to avoid misinterpretation. These types of principles are the guardrails that Biden thinks should be worked on.
When questioned if Biden raised with Xi the concerns about the origins of COVID-19, the official declined to provide specifics. However, the official noted that the two leaders talked about a wide array of “transnational issues” where both countries have an interest.
Included in these issues, to one extent or another, is the ongoing COVID virus global pandemic.