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Xi's US visit to boost new type of major-country relationship

2015-02-13 09:06 Xinhua Web Editor: Gu Liping

Chinese President Xi Jinping's state visit to the United States in September will give a new boost to the development of a new type of major-country relationship, international think tanks said Thursday.

Xi accepted President Barack Obama's invitation for a state visit during a phone conversation on Wednesday. This will USbe Xi's first state visit to the US since he became China's top leader in 2013.

"Face to face communication will facilitate a steady growth of bilateral relationship and ensure a smooth transition of China's relations with the new US administration after presidential elections in 2016," said Ruan Zongze, vice president of the China Institute of International Studies.

During the phone conversation, Xi expressed hope that the two countries' Strategic and Economic Dialogue and high-level consultation on people-to-people exchanges, which will be held in the United States this year, will achieve as many positive results as possible.

Xi and Obama discussed several areas of potential cooperation, including working toward bilateral investment treaty and reducing greenhouse gas emissions ahead of a climate summit in Paris in December.

"Through this trip, both sides will better manage their differences on South China Sea and cyber security to avoid frictions or crisis in bilateral ties," said Da Wei, a research fellow with the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations.

Urging both sides to respect and accommodate each other's core interests and major concerns, Xi expressed hope that Washington takes seriously China's concern on Taiwan and Tibet, so as to keep China-US ties free from unfavorable interference.

"Military relations are the 'short plank' (in the concept of the cask effect) in China-US USrelations. A small step forward in this will lift the overall relationship," military expert Zhao Xiaozhuo said.

China and the US signed MoUs on two mutual trust mechanisms, namely a mutual reporting and trust mechanism for major military operations and a code of safe conduct on naval and air military encounters in 2014, making them highlights of their military relationship.

Progress in military relations seems to continue in 2015. According to the two defense ministries, they will have a series of joint exercises in 2015, and China is likely to participate in the US-led Rim of the Pacific multilateral naval exercises for the second time.

China and the US will have more cooperation in combating corruption, though there is no extradition treaty between them, Ruan said.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying also confirmed that Chinese and US working groups attended an APEC meeting on anti-corruption in the Philippines in January and that they will meet again in August.

Chinese and US officials are beginning to prepare for the visit. US Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited Beijing on Wednesday and voiced his commitment to ensuring a success of Xi's visit.

Xi and Obama met in June 2013 for an informal summit at the Annenberg Retreat, California, where they agreed on building a new type of major-country relationship.

In November 2014, Obama paid a state visit to China after attending an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Beijing. Xi and Obama spent some 10 hours together and both countries announced breakthroughs on climate change and visa facilitation.

Xi's September trip will coincide with the 70th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations. Analysts say Xi and Obama are expected to talk on regional and international issues such as the 70th anniversary of the victory against fascism, cyber security, the Iranian nuclear issue and the situation on the Korean Peninsula.

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