The Chinese and US leaders held a summit on the sidelines of APEC.
US President Joe Biden hosted his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in San Francisco on Wednesday for a bilateral summit on the first day of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting.
Both presidents were accompanied by a number of top government officials, and shared their opening statements with reporters ahead of the official discussions.
Biden reminded Xi that they last met in Bali a year and a day ago and that he looked forward to candid and honest discussions about the US-China relationship, which he said needed to be “managed responsibly” so it does not turn from competition to conflict.
“I’ve never doubted what you told me,” the US president told his Chinese colleague.
Xi noted that “a lot has happened” since Bali and that among the many grave problems facing the world are rising protectionism and the “sluggish” post-pandemic global economy.
The Sino-American relationship is the “most important bilateral relationship in the world” and should be developed within the context of ongoing major changes, Xi said, presumably referring to the emergence of a multipolar global order.
China and the US should rise above their differences and find a way to get along, the Chinese president said.
“It is unrealistic for one side to remodel the other,” Xi told Biden, adding that the planet is “big enough for [our] two countries to succeed.”
Xi arrived in California on Tuesday, for the 2023 meeting of the APEC. The inter-governmental forum includes 21 countries from the Pacific Rim.