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Thursday, June 25, 2015, 09:20

China, US wrap up annual talks on ties

By Agencies
China, US wrap up annual talks on ties
Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang, second from left, Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong, third from left, and China's State Councilor Yang Jiechi, fourth from left, meet with US President Barack Obama (not in photograph) at the conclusion of the seventh meeting of the US China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, June 24, 2015, in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo / Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON - Top Chinese and US officials wrapped up Wednesday their two-day high-level talks here with substantial outcomes in strategic and economic sectors, as well as people-to-people exchanges.

During this year's seventh China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED) and the sixth China-US High-Level Consultation on People-to-People Exchange (CPE), a wide range of bilateral, regional and global issues of common concern were covered, including climate change, interaction in the Asia-Pacific region, managing differences and sensitive situations, the United Nations and multilateral affairs, science and innovation, green ports and ships, as well as fighting illegal trade in wildlife.

The United States claimed progress with China on currency issues and toward negotiating a code of conduct for cyberspace after two days of high-level talks.

State Councilor Yang Jiechi said China cracks down on hacking and is ready to cooperate with the US on cybersecurity. But he urged the US to "respect facts."

US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew cited significant progress on a longstanding US concern that China's currency is undervalued against the dollar, which helps Chinese exporters.

He acknowledged that the renminbi, or RMB, has appreciated in value and said that China's foreign exchange intervention has declined over the past year. He said China has committed to intervene in the foreign exchange market only when necessitated by disorderly market conditions.

China reminded US disputed areas in the South China Sea are its sovereign territory.

"There is no crisis in the South China Sea," said Zheng Zeguang, assistant minister of foreign affairs, adding that China's behavior was "beyond reproach." He said it should not be an issue between the US and China because the US is not a claimant.

The US and China said Wednesday they are stepping up cooperation on preserving the ocean and combating illegal fishing in the North Pacific. Both sides are also emphasizing their joint efforts on combating climate change.

This year's S&ED was co-chaired by Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang and State Councilor Yang Jiechi, special representatives of Chinese President Xi Jinping, and US Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, on behalf of US President Barack Obama.

The CPE was co-chaired by Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong, a special representative of Xi, and Kerry.

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