BEIJING – The United States and China are willing to establish a relationship of cooperation favorable for both countries and are presently moving in that direction, Chinese President Xi Jinping and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson agreed on Sunday.
During a meeting with Chinese leader, Tillerson conveyed to Xi the “very high value” US President Donald Trump places on the communication between the two countries, which will serve to improve future ties.
“We know that through further dialogue we will achieve a greater understanding that will lead to a strengthening of the ties between China and the United States, and set the tone for our future relationship of cooperation,” the US secretary of state said.
As long as this relationship of communication and understanding continues, bilateral relations will keep moving in the “right direction,” Tillerson added.
Meanwhile, Xi expressed his satisfaction at the results of Tillerson’s visit to Beijing and said China is prepared to begin a new phase of constructive relations with Washington.
“You said that China-US relations can only be friendly. I express my appreciation for this,” Xi told Tillerson.
Xi confirmed he had spoken several times with Trump and that both leaders believe that “China-US cooperation henceforth is the direction we are both striving for. We are both expecting a new era for constructive development.”
After visiting Japan and South Korea in his first visit to Asia as the chief US diplomat, Tillerson arrived in China on Saturday, where he met his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, and State Councilor Yang Jiechi, the architect of China’s foreign policy, in Beijing on Saturday.
In a later meeting with the press, Tillerson said, among other matters, the officials discussed the urgency of collaborating to halt North Korea’s nuclear program and that both countries pledged to do everything possible to prevent a military conflict on the Korean peninsula.
Although no mention was made of the matter in Sunday’s remarks, it is believed Tillerson and Xi may have finalized the details of the first meeting between the presidents of the two countries, which according to reports, will take place early April in the “Southern White House,” the Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida owned by Trump.