Subject: US, China set for dialogue on critical issues Tue 19 Jun - 10:52
WASHINGTON : Senior officials from the United States and China are to hold a twice-yearly dialogue in Washington this week on bilateral and multilateral issues, the State Department said Monday.
US deputy secretary of state John Negroponte and China's Executive Vice Foreign Minister Dai Bingguo will lead their teams to the two-day US-China "senior dialogue" beginning Wednesday, the department said in a statement.
The dialogue is expected to cover the countries' bilateral relations as well as a range of key global issues, including security in Northeast Asia, energy and the environment, Iran and the conflict in Sudan's Darfur.
The dialogue "is an important forum for both countries to discuss issues of strategic and political importance, including how to achieve our common goals," the statement said.
US President George W. Bush and Chinese President Hu Jintao agreed in 2004 during a summit of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum to hold the talks among their officials as part of efforts to improve ties.
US-China ties are clouded by a variety of issues, including US accusations of Beijing's secret military build-up and human rights abuses and that China is keeping its currency undervalued.
Currency concerns dominated a US-China "strategic" economic dialogue last month led by Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi and US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson even as unveiled measures to boost trade and investment ties. - AFP/ch