Biden and Xi will seek to stabilize relations at the meeting in California

President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping plan to meet Wednesday in California for a discussion that Biden advisers say is aimed at stabilizing relations even as it contains a number of issues on which the two fiercely competitive countries disagree.

The Biden administration, which officially announced the meeting on Friday morning, said the two leaders would have a highly choreographed discussion while attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco, known as APEC.

Speaking to reporters on Thursday, two of Mr. Biden’s senior advisers said the meeting was intended to be broad, and that Mr. Biden was prepared to raise issues including Taiwan, election meddling, the war in Ukraine and the war between Israel and Hamas.

Taiwan, an independent island claimed by China, is due to hold elections early next year, and one adviser said Mr Biden would seek to “present a clearer picture” of Mr Xi – meaning the United States expects Beijing to stay out of the way and worry. that it could. Mr Biden is also expected to warn Mr Xi against meddling in the US election.

The advisers, who spoke on condition of anonymity to view the meeting, did not provide details on its location, citing security concerns.

The meeting will take place almost a year after Mr Biden and Mr Xi met during the Group of 20 summit in Bali, Indonesia, another tightly planned diplomatic affair that took place amid fears of growing Chinese aggression towards Taiwan and fierce competition between Washington and Beijing. due to military and technological progress. The two haven’t spoken since, and the year between them has severely tested their relationship.

A Chinese spy balloon that flew over the United States before being shot down by a US fighter jet off the coast of South Carolina sparked a diplomatic crisis in February. More recently, tensions have flared over issues such as Chinese espionage and US restrictions on technology exports to China.

Tensions remain and will be resolved, Mr. Biden’s advisers say, but this year Chinese and American officials have also emphasized the importance of strengthening ties between the world’s two largest economies. The Biden administration has already sent several top officials — including Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, Secretary of State Janet L. Yellen and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo — to China this year to try to make clear that while the United States wants to protect national security, does not seek to sever economic ties.

On Thursday, China’s ambassador to the United States, Xie Feng, said in a video commentary at a forum in Hong Kong that China wanted assurances that “the US does not seek to change the Chinese system, does not seek a new Cold War, does not support Taiwan independence, and has no intention of seeking separation from China.”

“China-US relations still face serious challenges, and there is still a long way to go to stabilize and improve relations,” Mr Xie said at the event, the Forum on US-China Relations in Hong Kong.

Experts cautioned that the meeting between Mr. Biden and Mr. Xi was not expected to produce any breakthroughs on difficult issues such as Chinese military aggression in Taiwan, U.S. restrictions on sales of advanced semiconductors to China or U.S. concerns about China’s human rights record.

“There’s not going to be anything that moves the relationship in the other direction,” said Oriana Skylar Mastro, a fellow at Stanford University’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies.

Outside of the meeting with Mr. Biden, Mr. Xi is expected to focus much of his time in California on showing American industry leaders that his country is open for business. After he and Mr. Biden meet, Mr. Xi to talk to America’s top business executives at a $2,000-a-plate dinner, part of a “CEO Summit” held on the sidelines of the main event.

In addition to issues of trade and competition, Mr. Biden is expected to discuss the Gaza war with Mr. Xi, officials said Thursday. Beijing has warm trade and diplomatic relations with Iran, a country that helps support Hamas and other militant groups in the Middle East, and Mr. Biden is expected to stress to Mr. Xi that the United States will respond to any escalation of the war caused by Iran.

Mr. Biden will also monitor developments in Washington as he leads a meeting with Mr. Xi and engages with other leaders in APEC, the 21-nation grouping that surrounds the Pacific Ocean. While Mr. Biden is on the West Coast, the federal government will move closer to shutting down.

House Republicans have so far been unable to come together on a proposal to fund the government, and the current spending freeze expires on November 17. White House officials have suggested the president could cut his trip short if a shutdown appears more likely, but on Thursday they publicly downplayed the idea.

Asked about the possibility of unrest in Washington getting in Mr. Biden’s way, John F. Kirby, the White House spokesman, told reporters: “Well, my God, we haven’t even loaded the luggage on the plane.”

Anna Swanson and Peter Baker contributed to the reporting.

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