(Central News Agency reporter Yin Junjie, New York, 8th) U.S. President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to meet in San Francisco next week. Zhang Yan, an expert from an American think tank, predicts that Taiwan will be the focus of the talks between the two. It is difficult to achieve a major breakthrough in easing tensions between the United States and China, but it is still important for the heads of state to maintain communication.
The United States and China have not yet announced the outcome of the “visit-to-Xi meeting”, but officials from the two countries have had frequent exchanges recently. It is expected that Xi Jinping will hold bilateral talks with Biden during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in San Francisco next week. This will be the second face-to-face dialogue between the two after their talks on the sidelines of the Group of 20 (G20) summit in Bali, Indonesia, last November.
Ian Johnson, senior fellow for China studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), writes an article analyzing Taiwan, the fight against the opioid analgesic fentanyl, the war between Israel and the Palestinian armed group Hamas, and climate change Changes are the four major focus topics of the “Xiu Xi Meeting”.
Among them, Taiwan is the most important issue in Zhang Yan’s eyes.
He wrote that Beijing views Taiwan as part of China and opposes Taiwan’s independence. Xi Jinping will hope that Biden will reiterate the established position of the United States that it does not support Taiwan’s independence. He may also expect Biden to indicate that Washington has no preferred camp in Taiwan’s presidential election. If the Kuomintang, which has a softer stance on China, wins the election, Beijing will achieve its goal.
In addition, the United States may hope that China will promise to control the chemical raw materials for manufacturing fentanyl, showing that the Biden administration’s foreign policy not only focuses on elites, but also takes care of the common people. Regarding the Israel-Kazakhstan war, as China wants to remain neutral, this issue may be marginalized. In contrast, the United States and China are the world’s two largest emitters of greenhouse gases and may declare a joint response to climate change.
However, Zhang Yan, who has been stationed in China as a journalist for many years, said that he should not expect a major breakthrough in this meeting between the US and China heads of state.
He said the days when foreign dignitaries met with Chinese leaders and came back with a slew of business deals and other outcomes were gone. This is not a bad thing. After all, those talks have always been empty, many investment letter of intent often go nowhere, and China sometimes promises market access but breaks its promises. While it’s easy to reject “empty talk,” it’s also important for senior government officials to keep lines of communication open.
The United States and China have competed fiercely in military, technological and other fields in recent years, and bilateral relations have been at their lowest point in the past 40 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations. In February this year, the US military shot down a Chinese reconnaissance balloon flying over North America. Tensions between the two countries intensified, and high-level communication was suspended for a long time before it got back on track.
Zhang Yan analyzed that there are internal reasons for Xi Jinping and Biden to meet again after a year.
China’s economic growth has slowed, youth unemployment remains high, and rare large-scale demonstrations broke out in many places last year. Even if the demonstration was short-lived and did not spread, it still showed that people were deeply worried about livelihood issues such as income, rising prices and housing prices. It is generally believed at home and abroad that Xi Jinping has abandoned the “reform and opening up” policy pursued by previous leaders, and China is gradually shrinking inward.
Zhang Yan said that Xi Jinping’s meeting with Biden in this context can show that he can handle Sino-US relations well while easing internal concerns that China is gradually heading towards war.
As for Biden, Zhang Yan said that foreign affairs issues are usually not the key to the re-election of a US president, but Biden claims to be a foreign policy expert and is facing tests after the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, and the recent war between Israel and Kazakhstan. For Biden, it is important to avoid facing new conflicts in the election year, including preventing conflicts between the United States and China over Taiwan. (Editor: Chen Chenggong) 1121109