President Joe Biden welcomed the "productive" meeting he held with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping this Wednesday in California, in which both leaders agreed to reestablish military communications in a bid to reduce tensions.
The leaders of the two superpowers began their first meeting in a year with a handshake in the Filoli Garden, and ended the meeting with a walk through the lush green areas of this property 40 kilometers from San Francisco.
"I just concluded several hours of meetings with President Xi and I think they were some of the most constructive and productive discussions we have had," Biden said in a solo press conference after the meeting.
Beijing had cut military communications with Washington after the then Speaker of the US House of Congress, Nancy Pelosi, visited Taiwan in 2022. The decision to restore them was of "crucial importance," Biden said.
Although disagreement remained on issues such as Taiwan, Biden said that Xi was "direct" with him during the extensive meeting.
"Misunderstandings on both sides can cause real problems with a country like China," he added. "And I think we're making real progress."
The leaders also reached an agreement in the fight against fentanyl: China agreed to take measures to reduce the production of ingredients for the synthetic opioid that is at the center of a health crisis in the United States, reported high-level officials from both countries.
Won't wage war
The presidents have not seen each other since November 2022, and relations cooled after the United States shot down an alleged Chinese spy balloon in February.
Since then, diplomats from Beijing and Washington have worked to bring the two leaders face to face.
The four hours of talks between Biden and Xi went "well," according to Biden.
Xi held a meeting with businessmen hours later and stated that China "does not seek spheres of influence and will not wage a hot or cold war against any country."
"I believe that once opened, the door of relations between China and the United States will not be closed again," he said.
"China is ready to be a partner and friend of the United States," he insisted.
The meeting between Biden and Xi occurred within the framework of the APEC summit, which brings together the leaders of the 21 economies of the Pacific bloc and takes place until Friday in San Francisco.