Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang (C), U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker (L) and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman pose for a photograph at the 27th Session of the China-U.S. Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) in Washington D.C., capital of the United States, on Nov. 23, 2016. (Photo: Xinhua/Yin Bogu)
China and the United States on Wednesday kicked off an annual high-level dialogue to seek more cooperation between the world's two largest economies, aiming to pave the way for a smooth transition of bilateral ties amid the U.S. presidential change.
"Firstly, we have to properly manage the differences, ensuring a smooth transition of China-U.S. economic and trade relations to the next U.S. administration," Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang said at the opening plenary session of the 27th Session of the China-U.S. Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT), the last high-level economic dialogue between the two countries under the Obama administration.
Wang said China will consider reasonable concerns of the United States, and that China also hopes the U.S. will fulfill its obligations under the Article 15 of the Protocol on China's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO), important provisions regarding China's market economy status in anti-dumping cases.
Secondly, the two sides have to expand areas of cooperation and yield more deliverables in the areas of two-way investment, digital economy and food safety, laying a solid foundation for China-U.S. economic and trade relations over the next year and a longer period, the Chinese vice premier said.
Thirdly, he called on the two sides to further strengthen the outcomes of the JCCT and highlight the JCCT's role in bilateral economic cooperation, showing a new type of China-U.S. major country relations with the principles of non-confrontation, non-conflict, mutual respect and win-win cooperation.
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker said the JCCT has "focused on areas ripe for collaboration" and promoted more trade and commerce between the two countries over the past three years.
The JCCT has sparked the creation of the China-U.S. Year of Tourism 2016 and facilitated a U.S. trade mission of 12 healthcare companies to Beijing and Chongqing, China, last month, Pritzker said.
U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman emphasized the need to keep the U.S.-China relations "on an even keel" amid strong headwinds of populism and protectionism around the world.
"Our two governments have less than two months to reinforce and fortify this relationship, so that it can endure through the uncharted waters that lay ahead," Froman said.
The JCCT gives the two sides a concrete opportunity to make progress in economic cooperation and address differences between the two major trade partners, he added.
Launched in 1983, the JCCT was the first high-level economic dialogue mechanism between China and the U.S., and plays an important role in China-U.S. economic cooperation and addressing economic and trade frictions.