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US & China Leader Meeting (Nov. 2022)

Updated: Nov 16, 2022

US President Joe Biden met with Chinese President Xi Jinping (November 14) in Bali, Indonesia, as part of his swing through Asia for both ASEAN and G-20 meetings.

What follows is a summary of the key publicly-released meeting points by the White House and China via its foreign ministry.

US-China Competition

President Biden says the United States will continue to compete vigorously with China, but that competition should not veer into conflict. President Xi says that China and the United States need to "explore the right way to get along with each other in the new era, put the relationship on the right course, and bring it back to the track of healthy and stable growth” of both countries. In addition, President Xi also says that ”competition should be about learning from each other to become one’s better self and make progress together, not about taking others down in a zero-sum game.” Further, China believes that there needs to be a “correct perception” of each country’s domestic/foreign policies and strategic intentions, and that interactions should be defined by dialogue and win-win cooperation, not confrontation. The United States should conform to the “basic norms” of international relations as well as the guiding three China-U.S. joint communiques to “manage differences and disagreements” to prevent confrontation and conflict.

Communication & Collaboration

President Biden stated that the United States and China must manage competition responsibly and maintain open lines of communication. The two leaders agreed to empower key senior officials to maintain communication. President Xi stated that China “remains firm” in pursuing an independent foreign “policy of peace,” always decides its views based on merit, and advocates peaceful resolution of issues “through dialogue and consultation.” President Biden says the United States and China must work together to address transnational challenges – such as climate change, global macroeconomic stability including debt relief, health security, and global food security. China agreed that financial teams will continue dialogue and coordination on macroeconomic policies, economic ties and trade; that the countries “will jointly work for the success” of the 27th UN Climate Change Conference (COP27); that they have reached agreement on dialogue and cooperation in public health, agriculture and food security; that they have agreed to “make good use” of the China-U.S. joint working group to promote the resolution of more issues; and, that China and the US have agreed to “encourage the expansion” of people-to-people exchanges “in all sectors.” President Biden says that the Secretary of State will visit China to follow up on the meeting’s discussions, though no specific date/timeline was provided.

Government & Human Rights

President Biden raised concerns about China’s “practices” in Xinjiang, Tibet, and Hong Kong, and human rights more broadly. The President said that it is a priority for the United States to resolve wrongful detention and exit ban cases of American citizens in China.

President Xi claims that “freedom, democracy and human rights are the common pursuit of humanity and also the unwavering pursuit” of the Chinese Communist Party. Further, China has a “Chinese-style democracy,” based on the “country’s reality, history and culture,” reflecting the “people’s will;” and that the specific differences between China and the United States can be addressed through “discussion on the precondition of equality.” President Xi says he believes that the “so-called “democracy versus authoritarianism” narrative is not a defining feature, nor a trend, of today’s world; and that President Biden has said that the United States “respects China's system, and does not seek to change it.”


President Biden says that the US One China policy has not changed; that it opposes any unilateral changes to the status quo by either side, and, that the world has an interest in the maintenance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait. The President objected to China’s “coercive and increasingly aggressive actions toward Taiwan, which undermine peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and in the broader region, and jeopardize global prosperity.” President Xi stressed that the Taiwan question “is at the very core of China's core interests, the bedrock of the political foundation of China-U.S. relations, and the first red line that must not be crossed in China-U.S. relations;” that resolving the Taiwan question is a matter only for the Chinese and that reunification is a “common aspiration of the Chinese people;” that China “absolutely” will not let anyone seek to split Taiwan from China; and, that “cross-Strait peace and stability and Taiwan independence are as irreconcilable as water and fire.” President Xi also claims that President Biden has said “on many occasions” that the United States does not support Taiwan independence and “has no intention to use Taiwan as a tool to seek advantages in competition with China or to contain China.”

Economic Practices

President Biden raised ongoing concerns about China’s non-market economic practices. President Xi claims that his government is putting China on a “path to modernization, basing our efforts on the goal of meeting people's aspirations for a better life, unswervingly pursuing reform and opening-up, and promoting the building of an open global economy.”

President Xi argued that the United States “starting a trade war or a technology war, building walls and barriers, and pushing for decoupling and severing supply chains run counter to the principles of market economy and undermine international trade rules,” and that China opposes “politicizing and weaponizing economic and trade ties as well as exchanges in science and technology.”

Ukraine Conflict

President Biden raised concern about Russia’s “irresponsible threats of nuclear use, and said that both Biden and Xi reiterated agreement “that a nuclear war should never be fought and can never be won and underscored their opposition to the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine.

President Xi said he thinks that it is important to give “serious thought” to three considerations: “first, conflicts and wars produce no winner; second, there is no simple solution to a complex issue; and third, confrontation between major countries must be avoided.” China says that it encourages peace talks between Russia and Ukraine, and hopes “that the United States, NATO and the EU will conduct comprehensive dialogues with Russia.”

North Korea

President Biden raised concerns about North Korea’s “provocative behavior,” and that the international community has an interest in encouraging North Korea “to act responsibly.” He also underscored the U.S. commitment “to defending our Indo-Pacific Allies.” China did not speak to this matter in its statement.


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