US foreign policy

Yellen planning trip to China soon: US

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US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who held her first face-to-face meeting with her Chinese counterpart Wednesday, will soon travel to China, Washington said, as the two countries seek to boost contacts.

Yellen “looks forward to travelling to China and to welcoming her counterparts to the United States in the near future,” the US treasury department said following her meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He in Zurich.

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That comes just a day after a US official confirmed that US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will visit Beijing on February 5-6, marking the first trip by the top US diplomat in four years.

The planned visits come amid heightened diplomatic efforts to keep high tensions in check between the world’s two largest economies.

Long-simmering disputes between the two countries flared during Donald Trump’s presidency and have continued – if less acutely – under US President Joe Biden.

The United States and China, which are locked in fierce strategic competition, spend more on their militaries than any other nations.

But both Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping have said they want to reduce tensions.

When the two leaders met in November on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Bali, both voiced guarded hope at preventing disputes from spiraling out of control.

They pledged “to continue responsibly managing the competition between our two countries and to explore potential areas of cooperation,” the State Department said in November.

Following Yellen’s meeting with Liu on Wednesday, the treasury department said the discussion had been “candid, substantive and constructive.”

The pair had “agreed it is important for the functioning of the global economy to further enhance communication around macroeconomic and financial issues,” it said.

“They also agreed about the importance of sustainable development and that they would enhance cooperation on climate finance on a bilateral and multilateral basis,” it added.

During the meeting, the statement said, Yellen had also “raised issues of concern in a frank exchange of views.”

Read more:

Yellen, China’s Liu hold ‘candid’, ‘frank’ talks

China is open to the world Vice-Premier Liu says at World Economic Forum

China foreign ministry would ‘welcome’ US Secretary Blinken visit

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