News / Asia

Biden to Discuss Economy, Human Rights During China Visit

US Vice President Joseph Biden, left, shakes hands with Chinese National Peoples Congress Standing Committee Chairman Wu Bangguo during their meeting at the Great Hall of People in Beijing, China, August 18, 2011
US Vice President Joseph Biden, left, shakes hands with Chinese National Peoples Congress Standing Committee Chairman Wu Bangguo during their meeting at the Great Hall of People in Beijing, China, August 18, 2011

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has opened a five-day visit to China, telling his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping that the two nations hold the key to global economic stability.

During opening remarks Thursday, China's official Xinhua news agency quoted Xi as saying the two countries share great interests and responsibilities.  He also said benefits of an enhanced bilateral relationship extend beyond the two nations to the larger world. Biden replied that global economic stability depends "in no small part" on cooperation between the two countries.

Biden's visit comes less than two weeks after an unprecedented U.S. credit downgrade, a move that sparked global concerns about the safety of dollar assets.

Ahead of Biden's arrival, U.S. officials said the vice president would emphasize that the United States is economically sound and that Chinese investments are safe.  He is also expected to press China to allow its currency, the yuan, to rise in value against the dollar.

The United States and other countries say China's currency is severely undervalued, giving it an unfair trade advantage by making its products cheaper overseas. China has allowed the yuan to rise by about 7 percent since June 2010, and argues a more rapid increase would disrupt its economy.  

China holds about $1 trillion of the U.S. debt, making it the United States' biggest foreign creditor.  It has expressed concern that the recent U.S. deal to raise the U.S. debt ceiling and barely avoid default does not do enough to cut the budget deficit.  

Biden is slated to meet Friday with Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao.  He will also join a roundtable discussion with Chinese and U.S. business leaders, before traveling Saturday with Xi to the southwestern province of Sichuan.  In Sichuan, the two vice presidents will tour areas devastated by a 2008 earthquake.

Biden's nine-day Asian tour also takes him next week to Mongolia and Japan.

In Washington Wednesday, a State Department spokeswoman said Biden will raise U.S. concerns about the human rights situation throughout China, as the government consistently does.

The spokeswoman also urged China to immediately release rights lawyer Gao Zhishen from custody and clarify his whereabouts. Gao has not been heard from in over a year.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Beijing Warns Hong Kong Protesters, Cracks Down at Home

In suppressing protest news, China reportedly has arrested more than 20 people on the mainland who acted in support of Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters More

Competing Goals Could Frustrate Efforts to Fight Islamic State

As alliances shift and countries re-define themselves, analysts say long-standing goals of some key players in Middle East may soon compete with Western goals More

Child Sexual Exploitation to Worsen in SE Asia

Southeast Asia’s planned economic integration is a key step for boosting the region’s productivity, but carries downsides as well More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid