WASHINGTON — United States (US) President Joe Biden is expected to speak with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi when China’s top diplomat visits the White House this week, according to two US officials familiar with planning for the visit.
Mr Wang, who is set to meet Mr Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan, at the White House on Friday could see Mr Biden in person at that time, according to one of the people.
The White House declined to comment.
It is unclear how substantial their interaction will be, but even an informal greeting would be Mr Biden’s senior-most interaction with the Chinese government since he briefly met Chinese President Xi Jinping’s No 2, Premier Li Qiang, on the sidelines of the G20 summit in New Delhi.
It comes as US and Chinese officials set the stage for a long-sought, one-on-one meeting between Mr Biden and Mr Xi at November’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit in San Francisco. Mr Xi and Mr Biden last met at a summit in Bali last November.
Mr Wang is also set to meet Secretary of State Antony Blinken during his trip to Washington this Thursday through Saturday. Several top US officials including Mr Blinken met their Chinese counterparts in Beijing this summer.
Mr Wang is the top foreign affairs official in the Chinese Communist Party and also foreign minister since the dismissal of Qin Gang in July.
Mr Biden said during a press conference on Wednesday (Oct 25) that he plans to “compete” with China “according to the international rules — economically, politically, and other ways — but I’m not looking for conflict”. He also warned Chinese officials against aggression toward the Philippines.
For his part, Mr Xi said on Wednesday China is willing to cooperate with the United States as both sides manage their differences and work together to respond to global challenges, according to Chinese state media. REUTERS