In phone call, China's Xi tells Trump
cooperation is only choice
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[November 14, 2016]
By Michael Martina and Steve Holland
BEIJING/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Chinese
President Xi Jinping told U.S. President-elect Donald Trump that
cooperation was the only choice for relations between the world's two
largest economies, with Trump saying the two had established a "clear
sense of mutual respect".
There has been intense speculation over the impact of Trump's win on
issues facing the two countries, from global trade and climate change to
the security balance in the Asia-Pacific.
Trump lambasted China throughout the U.S. election campaign, drumming up
headlines with his pledges to slap 45 percent tariffs on imported
Chinese goods and to label the country a currency manipulator on his
first day in office.
His election has injected uncertainty into relations at a time when
Beijing hopes for stability as it faces daunting reform challenges at
home, slowing growth and a leadership reshuffle of its own that will put
a new party elite around Xi in late 2017.
In their first interaction since the U.S. election, Chinese state media
said Xi told Trump in a telephone call on Monday that as the world's
largest developing and developed economies, there were many areas where
China and the United States could cooperate.
"The facts prove that cooperation is the only correct choice for China
and the United States," China Central Television (CCTV) cited Xi as
Xi's remarks were a reiteration of phrasing typically used by Beijing to
describe bilateral relations.
The two sides must "promote the two countries' economic development and
global economic growth" and "push for better development going forward
in China-U.S. relations", Xi said.
"During the call, the leaders established a clear sense of mutual
respect for one another, and President-elect Trump stated that he
believes the two leaders will have one of the strongest relationships
for both countries moving forward," a statement from Trump's
presidential transition office said.
The two agreed to maintain close communications and meet soon, CCTV
said. Xi had congratulated Trump in a message delivered shortly after
his surprise election victory last week.
[to top of second column]
Chinese President Xi Jinping sits with Britain's Foreign Secretary
Philip Hammond (not pictured) after arriving for a four-day state
visit at London's Heathrow Airport, October 19, 2015. REUTERS/Toby
The Global Times, a nationalist tabloid published by the ruling
Communist Party's People's Daily newspaper, said if Trump slapped
China with heavy tariffs it would "paralyze" bilateral trade.
"When the time comes, large orders for Boeing planes would switch to
Europe, U.S. auto sales in China would face setbacks, Apple phones
would essentially be crowded out, and U.S. soybeans and corn would
be eradicated from China," the paper said in a commentary.
"Trump, coming from a business background, is very astute. We do not
believe he will treat China-U.S. trade so childishly."
China has signaled it will promote plans for regional trade
integration, vowing to seek support for a Beijing-backed
Asia-Pacific free trade area at a summit in Peru later this month,
after Trump's win dashed hopes for the U.S.-led Trans-Pacific
Trump's criticism of U.S. allies, including Japan, for free-riding
on U.S. security guarantees, has deepened anxiety among Washington's
allies about its commitment to post-war security arrangements in the
face of a rising China and volatile North Korea.
Trump appears to be seeking quick ways to withdraw the United States
from a global accord to combat climate change, which has been billed
by China and U.S. President Barack Obama as a key area for
(Reporting by Michael Martina and Sue-Lin Wong in BEIJING and Steve
Holland in WASHINGTON; Editing by Nick Macfie)
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