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Wen Jiabao Meets with U.S. President Obama

On November 18, 2009, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao met with U.S. President Barack Obama in Diaoyutai State Guesthouse.

Wen first welcomed Obama's visit, saying its outcome has far-reaching significance.

Wen said both China and the United States are influential countries in the world. "The history of Sino-U.S. relations has made it clear that cooperation benefits both sides while confrontation results in harms, and mutual trust brings progress while suspicion causes setbacks," Wen said. Cooperation is better than containment, dialogue is better than confrontation, and partnership is better than rivalry, he added. He expressed his hope that Obama's China visit would lift the comprehensive and cooperative China-U.S. relations to a new level.

Wen emphasized that China attaches great importance to ties with the United States. A stable, cooperative and positive China-U.S. relationship not only benefits both countries, but also the entire world. China disagrees to the suggestion of a "Group of Two" (G2) for the following three reasons. First, China is still a developing country with a huge population and has a long way to go before it becomes modernized, Wen said, stressing "We must always keep sober-minded over it". Second, China pursues the independent foreign policy of peace and will not align with any country or country blocks, Wen said. Third, Global issues should be decided by all nations in the world, rather than one or two countries, he added. "Meanwhile, we believe Sino-U.S. cooperation can play a unique role in advancing the establishment of the new international political and economic order, as well as promoting world peace, stability and prosperity," Wen said.

Wen noted that the bilateral trade volume between China and the United States has increased greatly since the two countries established diplomatic ties 30 years ago. "This is in the fundamental interests of both countries and their people," Wen said. "We do not pursue trade surplus and I hope the United States would lift its policy of restricting high-tech product exports to China and increase their proportion in the U.S. exports to China." "Meanwhile, our two countries should strengthen mutual investment and cooperation in such fields as energy, environmental protection and high technology for a more balanced bilateral trade," Wen said. The revival of world trade and investment is beneficial to the global effort to cope with the financial crisis and helps accelerate the recovery of the world economy, he said. "China and the United States should work together to fight against protectionism in trade and investment," Wen said.

Obama, who described U.S.-China relations as of global significance, said U.S.-China cooperation is crucial as far as major global issues such as economic recovery, climate change and security and stability of the Asia-Pacific region and the world are concerned. He hoped the two countries would abandon distrust and misunderstanding and strengthen exchange and cooperation, so as to push U.S.-China relations forward.

The United States appreciates and supports the Chinese government's efforts in developing the economy and reducing poverty, said Obama, adding that the development of China is beneficial to the world.

The United States and China are important trade partners for each other, which has brought huge benefits to both countries, while trade protectionism does no good to either side, Obama said. He said the United States is committed to promoting a balanced development of U.S.-China economic and trade relations for mutual benefit and a win-win situation. The United States appreciates China's efforts to adjust the economic structure, expand domestic demand, protect intellectual property rights and reform the Renminbi exchange rate regime, as these efforts are conducive to resolving trade imbalance between the two countries. The United States would properly handle bilateral trade frictions so that they would not harm the interests of the two countries, Obama said. The United States has noted China's concern over the export control to China and is willing to take measures and increase high-tech product exports to China, he added.

Wen and Obama also exchanged views on climate change, the Korean Peninsula situation, the Middle East issue and Doha round of world trade talks.

State Councilor Dai Bingguo, Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, Chairman of China's National Development and Reform Commission Zhang Ping, Minister of Commerce Chen Deming and Chinese Ambassador to the United States Zhou Wenzhong attended the meeting.



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