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Team sets off to top US talks

CHINESE Vice Premier Wang Qishan and State Councilor Dai Bingguo left Beijing yesterday for the first round of the China-US Economic and Strategic Dialogue to be held in Washington tomorrow and Tuesday.

Dai will co-chair the "Strategic Track" of the talks with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, while Wang will co-chair the "Economic Track" with US Treasure Secretary Timothy Geithner, each as special representatives of their presidents, according to the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

US President Barack Obama will address the opening session and meet Chinese delegates after the talks.

China and the United States, the world's biggest developing and developed countries, will seek consensus and build strategic trust during the first round of their talks, according to Jin Canrong, a scholar on international relations and deputy dean of the International Studies School at People's University of China.

"Through the dialogue, China and the United States can exchange information, clear up suspicions and boost bilateral ties," he said.

Jin said the strategic dialogue is likely to focus on the challenges and opportunities both countries face in bilateral, regional and global affairs. That would include such issues as anti-terrorism and nuclear non-proliferation, Jin said.

During the economic dialogue, Jin said, the two sides were expected to discuss bilateral cooperation on major economic issues, including the global financial crisis and reform of the international financial system.

Jin said China probably will ask the United States to protect its investment assets by conducting responsible financial and monetary policies.

Jin said the bilateral ties have strategic global significance, but are also complex.

"The two sides have many common points as well as differences in safeguarding their respective interests," he said.


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