China, US pledge to expand cooperation

June 18th, 2008 - 12:03 am ICT by IANS  

Annapolis, June 17 (Xinhua) China and the United States pledged to expand their mutual cooperation and strengthen economic and trade ties at the fourth round of their Strategic Economic Dialogue (SED) here Tuesday. “Due to the complicated, changeable nature of the current global economic and financial situation, both China and the US are facing a lot of challenges,” visiting Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan said at the opening session of the meeting, adding that the SED under such circumstances will have special significance for both the countries.

Wang listed three proposals for this round of the dialogue.

The first is to adhere to the topics of the meeting and expand consensus.

Secondly, Wang said both countries needed to take note of each other’s concerns and take a long-term perspective.

Finally, he said both sides needed to strengthen the SED mechanism and increase mutual strategic trust.

“The US-China economic relationship has become central to each nation’s interest and to maintaining a stable, secure and prosperous global economic system,” said US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson.

“Through the ongoing, dynamic and respectful discussions of the SED, the relationship is growing in a positive direction. The SED has brought concrete progress on issues important to the US, the Chinese and the global economy faster than it would have been possible otherwise,” he added.

Paulson said the meeting would build on previous progress, including “landmark agreements on food, feed and product safety announced at our December SED meeting in Beijing”.

“We will have a robust discussion on our economic relationship as we envision a future of sustainable economic growth,” he said.

Wang and Paulson are co-chairing the meeting as special representatives of the state leaders of the two countries.

Participants at the two-day meeting include minister-level officials and other senior officials from the two governments.

The discussions in the meeting will highlight five specific areas: financial and macro economic management, developing and protecting human capital, the benefits of trade and open markets, enhancing investment, and advancing joint opportunities for cooperation in energy and environment.

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