Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen emphasized the significant impact of the U.S.-China relationship, calling it one of the most consequential in the world. Ahead of the highly anticipated meeting between U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping, Yellen stressed the need to approach this relationship with utmost care.
Yellen delivered a speech at the Asia Society, outlining the Biden administration’s economic strategy in the Indo-Pacific region. She made it clear that the U.S. does not seek to sever ties with China, highlighting the potential negative consequences that would arise if countries in the region align themselves exclusively with either Washington or Beijing.
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Biden and Xi, leaders of the world’s two largest economies, are expected to meet during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco, which takes place from November 12-18.
During her tenure as Treasury chief, Yellen has made visits to South Korea, Japan, India, and other countries in the Indo-Pacific region. Her speech underscored the U.S.’s commitment to strengthening alliances and fostering partnerships with China’s neighbors.
“As we rebuild and enhance older alliances across the Indo-Pacific, we are also investing in new partnerships,” Yellen stated.
Additionally, Yellen spoke at the Inter-American Development Bank, where she emphasized the necessity of diversifying supply chains with trusted partners and allies. This approach, she believes, can lead to tremendous benefits for promoting growth in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Despite ongoing tensions between the U.S. and China, such as disputes over export controls on advanced technology and China’s assertive actions in the East and South China seas, there is hope for progress. China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, expressed the belief that reaching a successful outcome for a Biden-Xi meeting will require both sides to overcome challenges and work together collaboratively.