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U.S.-China Joint Statement November 17, 2009

US-China Joint Statement on five strategic issues.
November 17, 2009
U.S.-China Joint Statement

At the invitation of President Hu Jintao of the People’s Republic of China, President Barack Obama of the United States of America is paying a state visit to China from November 15–18, 2009.  The Presidents held in-depth, productive and candid discussions on U.S.-China relations and other issues of mutual interest.  They highlighted the substantial progress in U.S.-China relations over the past 30 years since the establishment of diplomatic ties, and they reached agreement to advance U.S.-China relations in the new era.  President Obama will have separate meetings with Wu Bangguo, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress and Premier Wen Jiabao. President Obama also spoke with and answered questions from Chinese youth.

I. The U.S.-China Relationship

The United States and China agreed that regular exchanges between leaders of the two countries are essential to the long-term, sound, and steady growth of U.S.-China relations.  The two sides are of the view that the three meetings between the two presidents and other important bilateral exchanges this year have strengthened relations.  President Obama invited President Hu to make a visit to the United States next year, and President Hu accepted the invitation with pleasure.  Leaders of the two countries will continue to maintain close communication through mutual visits, meetings, telephone conversations and correspondence.

The United States and China spoke highly of the important role of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue and recognized that the Dialogue offers a unique forum to promote understanding, expand common ground, reduce differences, and develop solutions to common problems.  Both sides believed that the first round of the Dialogue held in Washington, D.C., in July this year was a fruitful one and agreed to honor in good faith the commitments made and hold the second round in Beijing in the summer of 2010.  The two sides agreed that they will continue to use the direct communication links among senior leaders to maintain timely communication on major and sensitive issues, institutionalize the annual exchange of visits by the two foreign ministers and encourage senior officials of other departments of the two countries to exchange visits on a regular basis.

The United States and China commended the outcomes of the visit to the United States by General Xu Caihou, Vice Chairman of the Chinese Central Military Commission, in October this year, and stated that they will take concrete steps to advance sustained and reliable military-to-military relations in the future.  The two sides will prepare for the visit to the United States by General Chen Bingde, Chief of the General Staff of China’s People’s Liberation Army, and the visits to China by Robert Gates, the U.S. Secretary of Defense, and Admiral Michael Mullen, Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff.  The two sides will actively implement various exchange and cooperation programs agreed between the two militaries, including by increasing the level and frequency of exchanges.  The goal of these efforts is to improve their capabilities for practical cooperation and foster greater understanding of each other’s intentions and of the international security environment.

The United States and China agreed to deepen counter-terrorism consultation and cooperation on an equal and mutually beneficial basis and to strengthen law-enforcement cooperation.  They agreed to exchange evidence and intelligence on law enforcement issues in a timely and reciprocal manner.  The two countries will undertake joint investigations and provide investigative assistance on cases of mutual interest.  The United States and China will strengthen cooperation on criminal investigations and deepen collaboration in combating embezzlement as well as in counter-narcotics and pre-cursor chemical control and in combating unlawful migration.  They also will boost joint efforts to combat transnational crime and criminal organizations as well as money laundering and the financing of terrorism including counterfeiting and recovery of illicit funds. They will work to combat smuggling and human trafficking.

The United States reaffirmed its support for Expo 2010 Shanghai.

The United States and China applauded the rich achievements in scientific and technological cooperation and exchanges between the two countries over the past 30 years since the signing of the U.S.-China Agreement on Cooperation in Science and Technology and agreed to further upgrade the level of exchanges and cooperation in scientific and technological innovation through the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Science and Technology Cooperation.

The United States and China look forward to expanding discussions on space science cooperation and starting a dialogue on human space flight and space exploration, based on the principles of transparency, reciprocity and mutual benefit.  Both sides welcome reciprocal visits of the NASA Administrator and the appropriate Chinese counterpart in 2010.

The United States and China agreed to strengthen their cooperation on civil aviation, and confirmed their intent to expand the Memorandum of Agreement for Technical Cooperation in the field of Civil Aviation between the Federal Aviation Administration of the United States of America and the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).  The two sides welcomed cooperation by public and private bodies on the development of high speed railway infrastructure.

The United States and China undertook to implement the newly signed Memorandum of Understanding Between the Department of Agriculture of the United States of America and the Ministry of Agriculture of the People’s Republic of China on Cooperation in Agriculture and Related Fields.

The two countries agreed to collaborate further in joint research in the health sector including on stem cells.  They will deepen cooperation on global public health issues, including Influenza A (H1N1) prevention, surveillance, reporting and control, and on avian influenza, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria.  They will also enhance cooperation on food and product safety and quality.

The United States and China underlined that each country and its people have the right to choose their own path, and all countries should respect each other’s choice of a development model.  Both sides recognized that the United States and China have differences on the issue of human rights.  Addressing these differences in the spirit of equality and mutual respect, as well as promoting and protecting human rights consistent with international human rights instruments, the two sides agreed to hold the next round of the official human rights dialogue in Washington D.C. by the end of February 2010.  The United States and China agreed that promoting cooperation in the field of law and exchanges on the rule of law serves the interests and needs of the citizens and governments of both countries.  The United States and China decided to convene the U.S.-China Legal Experts Dialogue at an early date.

The two countries noted the importance of people-to-people and cultural exchanges in fostering closer U.S.-China bilateral relations and therefore agreed in principle to establish a new bilateral mechanism to facilitate these exchanges.  The two sides are pleased to note the continued increase in the number of students studying in each other’s country in recent years.  Nearly 100,000 Chinese are now studying in the United States, and the U.S. side will receive more Chinese students and facilitate visa issuance for them.  The United States has approximately 20,000 students in China.  The United States seeks to encourage more Americans to study in China by launching a new initiative to send 100,000 students to China over the coming four years.  China welcomed this decision by the United States.  The two sides agreed to expedite negotiations to renew in 2010 the Implementing Accord for Cultural Exchange for the Period Through 2010-2012 under the Cultural Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the People’s Republic of China. The United States and China agreed to jointly hold the Second U.S.-China Cultural Forum in the United States at an appropriate time.

II. Building and Deepening Bilateral Strategic Trust

The United States and China are of the view that in the 21st century, global challenges are growing, countries are more interdependent, and the need for peace, development, and cooperation is increasing.  The United States and China have an increasingly broad base of cooperation and share increasingly important common responsibilities on many major issues concerning global stability and prosperity.  The two countries should further strengthen coordination and cooperation, work together to tackle challenges, and promote world peace, security and prosperity.

The two countries believe that to nurture and deepen bilateral strategic trust is essential to U.S.-China relations in the new era.  During their discussions, the Chinese side said that it resolutely follows the path of peaceful development and a win-win strategy of opening-up, and is committed to promoting the building of a harmonious world of enduring peace and common prosperity.  The United States reiterated that it welcomes a strong, prosperous and successful China that plays a greater role in world affairs.  The United States stated that it is committed to working with other countries in addressing the most difficult international problems they face. China welcomes the United States as an Asia-Pacific nation that contributes to peace, stability and prosperity in the region.  The two sides reiterated that they are committed to building a positive, cooperative and comprehensive U.S.-China relationship for the 21st century, and will take concrete actions to steadily build a partnership to address common challenges.

The United States and China underscored the importance of the Taiwan issue in U.S.-China relations.  China emphasized that the Taiwan issue concerns China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and expressed the hope that the United States will honor its relevant commitments and appreciate and support the Chinese side’s position on this issue.  The United States stated that it follows its one China policy and abides by the principles of the three U.S.-China joint communiqués.  The United States welcomes the peaceful development of relations across the Taiwan Strait and looks forward to efforts by both sides to increase dialogues and interactions in economic, political, and other fields, and develop more positive and stable cross-Strait relations.

The two countries reiterated that the fundamental principle of respect for each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is at the core of the three U.S.-China joint communiqués which guide U.S.-China relations.  Neither side supports any attempts by any force to undermine this principle.  The two sides agreed that respecting each other’s core interests is extremely important to ensure steady progress in U.S.-China relations.

The United States and China believe that bilateral cooperation on common global challenges will contribute to a more prosperous and secure world.  They reaffirmed their commitment made on 27 June 1998 not to target at each other the strategic nuclear weapons under their respective control.  The two sides believed that the two countries have common interests in promoting the peaceful use of outer space and agree to take steps to enhance security in outer space.  The two sides agreed to discuss issues of strategic importance through such channels as the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue and military-to-military exchanges.

The United States and China agreed to handle through existing channels of consultations and dialogue military security and maritime issues in keeping with norms of international law and on the basis of respecting each other’s jurisdiction and interests.

III. Economic Cooperation and Global Recovery

The two sides are determined to work together to achieve more sustainable and balanced global economic growth.  To that end, the two sides noted that their forceful and timely policy responses helped stem the decline in global output and stabilized financial markets.  The two sides agreed to sustain measures to ensure a strong and durable global economic recovery and financial system.  The two sides reiterated that they will continue to strengthen dialogue and cooperation on macro-economic policies.  The two sides pledge to honor all commitments made at the inaugural meeting of the Strategic and Economic Dialogue, the G-20 summits, and APEC in Singapore.

The two sides commended the important role of the three G-20 summits in tackling the global financial crisis, and committed to work with other members of the G-20 to enhance the G-20’s effectiveness as the premier forum for international economic cooperation.  The two sides agreed to work together, including through a cooperative process on mutual assessment to make the G-20 Framework for Strong, Sustainable and Balanced Growth a success.  The two sides welcomed recent agreements by the G-20 to ensure that the International Financial Institutions (IFIs) have sufficient resources and to reform their governance structures in order to improve IFIs credibility, legitimacy and effectiveness.  The two sides stressed the need to follow through on the quantified targets for the reform of quota and voting shares of IFIs as soon as possible, increasing the voice and representation of emerging markets and developing countries in these institutions consistent with the Pittsburgh Summit Leaders Statement.  They also agreed to work together to strengthen the capacity of these institutions to prevent and respond to future crises.

The two sides will further enhance communication and the exchange of information regarding macro-economic policy, and work together to pursue policies of adjusting domestic demand and relative prices to lead to more sustainable and balanced trade and growth.  China will continue to implement the policies to adjust economic structure, raise household incomes, expand domestic demand to increase contribution of consumption to GDP growth and reform its social security system.  The United States will take measures to increase national saving as a share of GDP and promote sustainable non-inflationary growth.  To achieve this, the United States is committed to returning the federal budget deficit to a sustainable path and pursuing measures to encourage private saving.  Both sides will also pursue forward-looking monetary policies with due regard for the ramifications of those policies for the international economy.

The two sides recognize the importance of open trade and investment to their domestic economies and to the global economy, and are committed to jointly fight protectionism in all its manifestations.  The two sides agreed to work proactively to resolve bilateral trade and investment disputes in a constructive, cooperative, and mutually beneficial manner. Both sides will expedite negotiation on a bilateral investment treaty. The two sides are committed to seeking a positive, ambitious, and balanced conclusion to the Doha Development Agenda in 2010.

The two sides spoke highly of the outcomes of the 20th Meeting of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade.  The two sides reaffirmed the commitment at this JCCT meeting and look forward to their full implementation.

IV. Regional and Global Challenges

The two sides noted that, at a time when the international environment is undergoing complex and profound changes, the United States and China share a responsibility to cooperatively address regional and global security challenges. The two sides stressed that they share broad common interests in the Asia-Pacific region and support the development and improvement of an open and inclusive regional cooperation framework that is beneficial to all.  The two sides will work to encourage APEC to play a more effective role in promoting regional trade and investment liberalization and economic and technical cooperation and for the ASEAN Regional Forum to play a more effective role in strengthening regional security cooperation.

The two sides agreed that respect for the Treaty on the Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, IAEA mandates, and implementation of all relevant UN Security Council resolutions are essential for the success of our joint efforts to stem the spread of nuclear weapons.  The two presidents recalled their participation at the September 24, 2009, UN Security Council Summit on nuclear nonproliferation and nuclear disarmament.  They welcomed the outcome of the Summit and expressed their strong support for UN Security Resolution 1887.

The two sides reaffirmed the importance of continuing the Six-Party Talks process and implementing the September 19, 2005, Joint Statement, including denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, normalization of relations and establishment of a permanent peace regime in Northeast Asia.  The two sides stated that they will work together with other parties concerned to comprehensively achieve the purpose and overall goal of the Six-Party Talks through consultations and dialogues.  The Chinese side welcomed the start of high-level contacts between the United States and the DPRK.  The two sides expressed the hope that the multilateral mechanism of the Six Party Talks would convene at an early date.

The two sides noted with concern the latest developments with regard to the Iranian nuclear issue.  The two sides agreed that Iran has the right to peaceful uses of nuclear energy under the NPT and it should fulfill its due international obligations under that treaty.  They welcomed the talks in Geneva on October 1st between the P5+1 and Iran as a promising start towards addressing international concerns about Iran’s nuclear program, and expressed their readiness to continue that engagement as soon as possible.  The two sides emphasized that all efforts should be made to take confidence building steps and called on Iran to respond positively to the proposal of the IAEA Director General.  The two sides reaffirmed their strong support for a comprehensive and long-term solution to the Iranian nuclear issue through negotiations, and called on Iran to engage constructively with the P5+1 and to cooperate fully with the IAEA to facilitate a satisfactory outcome.

The two sides welcomed all efforts conducive to peace, stability and development in South Asia.  They support the efforts of Afghanistan and Pakistan to fight terrorism, maintain domestic stability and achieve sustainable economic and social development, and support the improvement and growth of relations between India and Pakistan.  The two sides are ready to strengthen communication,  dialogue and cooperation on issues related to South Asia and work together to promote peace, stability and development in that region.

The two sides underlined their commitment to the eventual realization of a world free of nuclear weapons.  They reiterated their opposition to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and will jointly uphold the international nuclear non-proliferation regime.  They agreed to enhance non-proliferation cooperation on the basis of mutual respect and equality.  They will work together to achieve a successful Review Conference of Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in 2010.  They committed to pursue ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty as soon as possible, and will work together for the early entry into force of the CTBT.  They support the launching of negotiations on the Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty at an early date in the Conference on Disarmament, and stand ready to strengthen communication and cooperation in nuclear safety and security and in combating nuclear terrorism.  China attaches importance to the U.S. initiative to hold a nuclear security summit in April 2010 and will actively participate in the preparations for the summit.

The two sides also discussed the importance of UN peacekeeping operations in promoting international peace and security.

The two sides agreed to enhance dialogue on development issues to explore areas of cooperation and coordination and to ensure that both countries’ efforts are conducive to achieving sustainable outcomes.

V. Climate Change, Energy and Environment

The two sides held a constructive and productive dialogue on the issue of climate change.  They underscored that climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time.  The two sides maintain that a vigorous response is necessary and that international cooperation is indispensable in responding to this challenge. They are convinced of the need to address climate change in a manner that respects the priority of economic and social development in developing countries and are equally convinced that transitioning to a low-carbon economy is an opportunity to promote continued economic growth and sustainable development in all countries.     

Regarding the upcoming Copenhagen Conference, both sides agree on the importance of actively furthering the full, effective and sustained implementation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in accordance with the Bali Action Plan. The United States and China, consistent with their national circumstances, resolve to take significant mitigation actions and recognize the important role that their countries play in promoting a sustainable outcome that will strengthen the world’s ability to combat climate change.  The two sides resolve to stand behind these commitments.

In this context both sides believe that, while striving for final legal agreement, an agreed outcome at Copenhagen should, based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, include emission reduction targets of developed countries and nationally appropriate mitigation actions of developing countries.  The outcome should also substantially scale up financial assistance to developing countries, promote technology development, dissemination and transfer, pay particular attention to the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable to adapt to climate change, promote steps to preserve and enhance forests, and provide for full transparency with respect to the implementation of mitigation measures and provision of financial, technology and capacity building support.

The two sides are committed to working together and with other countries in the weeks ahead for a successful outcome at Copenhagen.

The two sides agreed that the transition to a green and low-carbon economy is essential and that the clean energy industry will provide vast opportunities for citizens of both countries in the years ahead and welcomed significant steps forward to advance policy dialogue and practical cooperation on climate change, energy and the environment, building on the U.S.-China Memorandum of Understanding to Enhance Cooperation on Climate Change, Energy and Environment announced at the first round of U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue this July and formally signed during the Presidential visit.

The two sides recognized the importance of the Ten Year Framework on Energy and Environment Cooperation (TYF) and commit to strengthen cooperation in promoting clean air, water, transportation, electricity, and resource conservation.  Through a new U.S.-China Energy Efficiency Action Plan under the TYF, the United States and China will work together to achieve cost-effective energy efficiency improvements in industry, buildings and consumer products through technical cooperation, demonstration and policy exchanges.  Noting both countries significant investments in energy efficiency, the two Presidents underscored the enormous opportunities to create jobs and enhance economic growth through energy savings.

The two sides welcomed the signing of the Protocol Between the Department of Energy of the United States of America and the Ministry of Science and Technology and the National Energy Administration of the People’s Republic of China on a Clean Energy Research Center.  The Center will facilitate joint research and development on clean energy by teams of scientists and engineers from both countries, as well as serve as clearing house to help researchers in each country, with public and private funding of at least $150 million over five years split evenly between the two countries.  The Center will have one headquarters in each country. Priority topics to be addressed will include energy efficiency in buildings, clean coal (including carbon capture and sequestration), and clean vehicles.

The two sides welcomed the launch of a U.S.-China Electric Vehicles Initiative designed to put millions of electric vehicles on the roads of both countries in the years ahead. Building on significant investments in electric vehicles in both the United States and China, the two governments announced a program of joint demonstration projects in more than a dozen cities, along with work to develop common technical standards to facilitate rapid scale-up of the industry.  The two sides agreed that their countries share a strong common interest in the rapid deployment of clean vehicles.

The two sides strongly welcomed work in both countries to promote 21st century coal technologies.  They agreed to promote cooperation on large-scale carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) demonstration projects and to begin work immediately on the development, deployment, diffusion, and transfer of CCS technology.  The two sides welcomed recent agreements between Chinese and U.S. companies, universities, and research institutions to cooperate on CCS and more efficient coal technologies.

The two sides welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of Cooperation between the Environmental Protection Agency of the United States and the National Development and Reform Commission of China to Build Capacity to Address Climate Change.

The two sides welcomed the launch of The U.S.-China Renewable Energy Partnership.  Through this Partnership, the two countries will chart a pathway to wide-scale deployment of wind, solar, advanced bio-fuels, and a modern electric power grid in both countries and cooperate in designing and implementing the policy and technical tools necessary to make that vision possible. Given the combined market size of the two countries, accelerated deployment of renewable energy in The United States and China can significantly reduce the cost of these technologies globally.

The two sides welcomed the establishment of The U.S.-China Energy Cooperation Program (ECP), a partnership between government and industry to enhance energy security and combat climate change.  The ECP will leverage private sector resources and expertise to accelerate the deployment of clean energy technology.

The two sides commended the results of the recently-held Fourth U.S.-China Energy Policy Dialogue and Ninth U.S.-China Oil and Gas Industry Forum and welcomed the launch of a U.S.-China Shale Gas Resource Initiative to accelerate the development of unconventional natural gas resources in China.  Drawing on recent experience in the United States, this initiative aims to improve energy security in both countries and help China transition to a low-carbon economy.

The two sides agreed to work together to advance global efforts to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy.  They welcomed the recently-concluded Third Executive Committee Meeting of the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership, and the commitment of the partnership to explore ways to enhance the international framework for civil nuclear energy cooperation.  They agreed to consult with one another in order to explore such approaches -- including assurance of fuel supply and cradle-to-grave nuclear fuel management so that countries can access peaceful nuclear power while minimizing the risks of proliferation.