US Treasury Secretary's visit to China forecasts 'progress' in relations

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After US Secretary of State Blinken, this time Treasury Secretary Yellen paid a visit to China. Yellen said that there are important disagreements between Washington and Beijing and that these problems cannot be solved overnight, but that the talks will help create a channel of communication. The new currency of the BRICS countries was also on the agenda.

US Treasury Secretary's visit to China forecasts 'progress' in relations

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said 10 hours of bilateral talks with top Chinese officials were "direct" and "productive" and helped stabilize a difficult relationship as she wrapped up a four-day trip to Beijing.

Yellen told a press conference as she left Beijing on Sunday that the US and China had disagreed on some issues but that the visit had helped "put the US-China relationship on surer footing".


"The US and China have significant disagreements," Yellen told reporters at the US embassy in Beijing, citing Washington's concerns about what she called "unfair economic practices" and recent punitive actions against US firms.

"But President (Joe) Biden and I do not see the relationship between the US and China through the frame of great powerconflict. We believe that the world is big enough for both of our countries to thrive."

Yellen's visit raised issues ranging from Taiwan to technology, which has put the two countries and their allies at odds. It was the latest attempt to mend ties between the world's two largest economies.


Yellen said the objective of her visit was to establish and deepen ties to China's new economic team, reduce the risk of misunder-standing and pave the way for cooperation in areas such as climate change and debt distress.

"I do think we've made some progress and I think we can have a healthy economic relationship that benefits both of us and the world," she said, adding that she expected increased and more regular communications at the staff level.

Yellen told Chinese officials that they could raise concerns about US actions so that Washington could "possibly in some situations, respond to unintended consequences of our actions if they're not carefully targeted."


Yellen said Washington was not trying to disengage from the Chinese economy, which she said would be "disastrous for both countries and destabilizing for the world."

But she said the United States wanted to see an "open, free and fair economy," not one that forces countries to take sides.


Asked about plans by the so-called BRICS countries - Brazil, India, Russia, and China - to unveil a new currency, Yellen said she expected the dollar to remain the dominant currency in international transactions.

"All of the data of which I'm aware shows that the dollar is overwhelmingly -- close to 90 percent -- used in international transactions, and I don't think that there is an alternative that could possibly displace that in the foreseeable future."


After US Secretary of State Antony Blinken's visit to Beijing last month, climate envoy John Kerry is expected to visit China this month.

Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to meet as soon as the Group of 20 summit in New Delhi, India, in September and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in San Francisco, US, in November.

Yellen ended her remarks by emphasizing that the problems between the two countries will be solved over time.

"No one visit will solve our challenges overnight. But I expect that this trip will help build a resilient and productive channel of communication," Yellen said.

Source: Al Arabiya

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