US President Joe Biden reaffirmed America’s claims to leadership in the Pacific region after a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping. “The United States is a Pacific power,” Biden said Thursday at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in San Francisco. At the meeting on Wednesday, Xi Jinping asked him why the US was so involved in the Pacific region. The answer is: “Because we are a Pacific nation.” The US has ensured peace and stability in the region. “We are not leaving,” he emphasized.

“The United States remains critical to the future of the region, and the region is more important to the United States of America than ever,” the Democrat said. His government has focused on the Pacific region from day one. The economic potential there is “limitless.”

APEC summit overshadowed by meetings between Biden and Xi Jinping

21 Pacific Rim countries work together in the APEC group. In addition to the United States and China, these also include Russia, Japan and South Korea. About 40 percent of the world’s population lives in APEC countries. The bloc together generates about 60 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP).

This year’s APEC summit was overshadowed by Biden’s bilateral meeting with Xi Jinping on the sidelines. The presidents met near San Francisco on Wednesday for the first time in a year for a lengthy discussion aimed at stabilizing tense relations between the world’s two largest economies. Xi Jinping is also attending the APEC summit.

US wants stable relationship with China despite differences

Biden reiterated that the goal is to responsibly shape competition between the United States and China. “This is what the world expects from us,” he emphasized. “And I promise you that we will do just that.”

Both countries have differences at different levels. But the United States did not want conflict and had no intention of separating its economy from China’s. Stable relations between the two largest economies benefit not only the United States and China, but the entire world.

Since taking office, Biden has focused his foreign policy on the Indo-Pacific region, including to counter China’s rise to power in the region. Roughly speaking, the Indo-Pacific is the region from the Indian Ocean to the North Pacific Ocean, which includes most of Asia and extends to the west coast of the United States. (mt/day)


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