Biden and Xi to meet in California

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U.S. President Joe Biden meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the G20 leaders' summit in Bali, Indonesia, November 14, 2022. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping are scheduled to meet in California on Wednesday for discussions aimed at stabilizing relations between their two countries. Despite their strong competition, the meeting, which will take place during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in San Francisco, will cover various issues.

The Biden administration formally announced the meeting, with advisors stating that topics such as Taiwan, election interference, the conflict in Ukraine, and the Israel-Hamas conflict will be addressed. Regarding Taiwan’s upcoming elections, President Biden aims to convey a clear message to President Xi, underlining the U.S. expectation that China will not interfere.

The meeting comes almost a year after their previous encounter during the Group of 20 summit in Bali. Tensions have persisted, with incidents like a Chinese spy balloon causing a diplomatic crisis and ongoing disputes over espionage and technology exports. While addressing these strains, both sides have underscored the importance of strengthening economic ties.

Chinese Ambassador Xie Feng expressed China’s desire for reassurances, including the U.S. not seeking to change China’s system, avoiding a new Cold War, rejecting Taiwan independence, and not intending to decouple from China. President Xi is expected to focus on promoting Chinese business during his time in California, including engaging with American industry leaders. President Biden may also discuss the Gaza conflict with Xi and the U.S. response to any escalation caused by Iran, a country with warm ties to China.

Experts cautioned against expecting the meeting between Mr. Biden and Mr. Xi to produce any breakthroughs on issues such as China’s military aggression in Taiwan, U.S. limits on the sales of advanced semiconductors to China or American concerns about China’s human rights record.

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