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Biden's significant China tour after 32 years

08-16-2011 15:58 BJT

by Wu Liming

BEIJING, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Vice President Joe Biden will visit China on Wednesday, 32 years after he first came to China as a member of the first U.S. delegation following the normalization of China-U.S. relations.

Biden has witnessed the ups and downs of the bilateral ties between the two countries over the past three decades and more. When he set foot on China in 1979, the two countries had just ended decades of hostility and signed a joint communique establishing diplomatic relations, setting the cornerstone for bilateral ties.

By the time Chinese President Hu Jintao visited the United States in January this year, the relationship between both countries had grown into a cooperative partnership based on mutual respect and common interest.

Biden's current visit to China may well be considered a continuation and extension of his China tour 32 years ago. It is a relay of the drive to deepening the U.S.-China relations.

"A rising China is a positive, positive development, not only for China but for America and the world writ large," wrote Biden 32 years ago as a young member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Addressing the opening session of the U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue in May, Biden said he still maintained his words from over three decades ago.

Thanks to the efforts from both sides, China-U.S.relations have gained tremendous momentum in the 21st century. Bilateral cooperation have extended to a wide range of fields including politics, economy, science, culture and other major international and regional issues.

Just as Biden himself put it, "It's no exaggeration to say that our relationship and how we manage it will help shape the 21st century."

The United States and China are the first and second biggest economies in the world, with close economic ties.

According to U.S. statistics, the United States exported over 110 billion U.S. dollars' worth of goods and service to China last year, which helped to create more than 500,000 jobs in the United States.

With a combined share of one-third of the world's economy and one-fifth of the world's trade volume, China and the United States share ties that go beyond their boundaries and have profound global impact.

The international community would be more than happy to see China and the United States join hands to tackle global challenges and strive for a robust, sustainable and balanced world economy.

Exchange of high-level visits across the Pacific Ocean had served to promote China-U.S. relations. The New York Times said in a recent article that Biden's coming China tour is aimed primarily to consolidate ties with the Chinese leadership.

It is true that China and the United States have differences. However, the two countries' common interest far outweighs their differences. Or as Biden put it, "We have much more to agree on than to disagree on."

If they adhere to the principle of equality and mutual respect, the two countries will be able to broaden their common ground and manage to handle properly the thorny issues between them.

As the United States' largest foreign creditor, China has much at stake over U.S. economic policy changes and a stable U.S. dollar. Therefore, Washintong's handling of all the related issues in a responsible manner will contribute to the steady growth of China-U.S. ties and the stable development of the world economy given the mounting concern about European and U.S. debt woes and fragile global economic recovery.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: Xinhua

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