President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping are holding a series of informal discussions at an estate in California. The two leaders met for more than two hours and discussed cybersecurity and North Korea.
As the presidents began their first session, Obama assured Xi that the United States welcomes the peaceful rise of China as a world power.
"It is in the United States' interests that China continues on the path of success, because we believe that a peaceful and stable and prosperous China is not only good for Chinese, but also good for the world and for the United States," said the president.
Obama addressed several areas in which Washington and Beijing disagree, including charges by both sides of trade protectionism and cyber theft.
"And the United States seeks an international economy and international economic order where nations are playing by the same rules, where trade is free and fair, and where the United States and China work together to address issues like cybersecurity and protection of intellectual property," he said.
The president mentioned efforts to curb North Korea's nuclear missile program as one of many areas of Sino-U.S. cooperation.
Xi said the China-U.S. relationship has reached a new historical starting point. He said he believes China and the United States can build a new model of a major-country relationship.
Friday's meeting was the first of several the two leaders have scheduled over two days at the California estate.