Biden admin intends to prevail in stiff competition with China: Sullivan

President Joe Biden believes that the US is going to end up in a "stiff" competition with China and intends to "prevail" in that, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan has said, a week before he is set to meet his Chinese counterpart for the first time.

The relations between China and the US are at an all time low. The two countries are currently engaged in a bitter confrontation over various issues, including trade, the origins of the novel coronavirus pandemic, the communist giant's aggressive military moves in the disputed South China Sea and human rights.

As far as China is concerned, the United States, as he (Biden) has said repeatedly, believes that we are going to end up in a stiff competition with China, and we intend to prevail in that competition, Sullivan told reporters at a White House news conference on Friday.

And he is amassing the sources of strength that we need to be able to prevail. And that is 100 per cent in line with everything that Joe Biden said on the campaign trail. And 50 days in, we believe we are in a better position to deal with the challenge from China than we were the day that he took office, he said in response to a question.

Sullivan along with the Secretary of State Antony Blinken are scheduled to meet their Chinese counterparts at Anchorage in Alaska next week, the first in-person meeting since Biden became US president in January.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry announced on Thursday that Yang Jiechi, a member of the Politburo of the ruling Communist Party of China and State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi will hold strategic dialogue with Sullivan and Blinken in Anchorage on March 18-19.

I don't expect that, for example, the phase one trade deal is going to be a major topic of conversation next week. This is our effort to communicate clearly to the Chinese government how the United States intends to proceed at a strategic level, what we believe our fundamental interests and values are, and what our concerns with their activities are -- whether it's on Hong Kong, or Xinjiang, or in the Taiwan Strait -- or, frankly, the issues that we heard today from our Quad partners: their coercion of Australia, their harassment around the Senkaku Islands, their aggression on the border with India, he said.

Responding to a question, Sullivan said that this will stay more in that zone than get into the details of questions around tariffs or export controls.

The world's two largest economies were locked in a bitter trade battle. The dispute has seen the US and China impose tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars worth of one another's goods.

But we will communicate that the United States is going to take steps, in terms of what we do on technology, to ensure that our technology is not being used in ways that are inimical to our values or adverse to our security. We will communicate that message at a broad level, he told reporters.

Sullivan said that in just 50 days, the Biden administration has revitalised its alliances in Asia and Europe.

Last week, with the Europeans, we agreed to a pause in tariffs in the long-running Boeing-Airbus dispute. And we executed a strong joint response to Russia's poisoning of Aleksey Navalny. We've begun deep consultations with our European partners on a common approach to our concerns with China, he said.

In Asia, just in the last few days, we've reached new hosting agreements for our troops and our bases with both Korea and Japan. And now we've taken the Quad to a new level, he said.

In February, President Biden said that China is in for extreme competition from the US under his administration, but that the new relationship he wants to forge need not be one of conflict. The relations will not be in the way that Trump did but will focus on international rules of the road.


(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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