mandag 22. mars 2021

After testy meeting, China says will discuss climate with US

China said Saturday it had agreed with the U.S. to take up climate change and a handful of other issues, a sign of small but possible progress at recently concluded talks that were otherwise marked by acrimonious public exchanges over the divisions between the world’s two largest economies.

China’s official Xinhua News Agency said in a dispatch from Alaska, where the two-day meeting wrapped up Friday, that China and the U.S. had decided to set up a working group on climate change and hold talks “to facilitate activities of ... diplomatic and consular missions” and on issues related to each other’s journalistsHowever, in a sign that differences will be difficult to overcome, U.S. officials said no formal agreements had been reached on resuming any dialogues or starting new initiatives.

The two countries feuded over journalist visas and consulates during the Trump administration, and climate change is seen as one area where they may be able to cooperate. Senior Biden administration officials held their first face-to-face meeting with their Chinese counterparts in Anchorage, Alaska, since taking office earlier this year. The talks opened with tense and extended exchanges over human rights before television cameras, before the officials retreated behind closed doors.

The two countries are at odds over a range of issues from trade to human rights in Tibet, Hong Kong and China’s western Xinjiang region, as well as Taiwan, China’s assertiveness in the South China Sea and the coronavirus pandemic.