© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen speaks during a news conference at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, China July 9, 2023. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/File Photo
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said she believed the United States and China wanted to stabilize their economic relationship with “honesty” and “respect”.
Yellen told NPR’s Marketplace in an interview recorded shortly before leaving Beijing on Sunday that she believed her trip, during which the two sides discussed “significant disagreements”, had succeeded in putting a floor under the relationship.
“There are challenges, but I believe there is a desire on both sides to stabilize the relationship and to constructively address the issues that each of us sees in our relationship, to do so frankly, with candor, with respect and to build a productive relationship moving forward,” she said.
Yellen told Marketplace that the visit was constructive and allowed him to clarify that U.S. export controls and other actions were driven by national security concerns and to diversify supply chains, not to gain an unfair economic advantage.
“I spent many hours with my counterpart going through our concerns in detail, responding to them and making it clear that they had an open channel of communication,” Yellen said.
The two sides, she said, agreed to “maintain open channels of communication and deepen our discussion of mutual concerns.”
As U.S.-China relations hit rock bottom on national security issues — including Taiwan, U.S. bans on high-tech exports and Chinese state-directed industrial policies — Washington has tried to mend ties between the two largest economies in the world.
Yellen’s trip followed that of Secretary of State Antony Blinken last month, the top US diplomat’s first trip under President Democrat Joe Biden. Climate envoy John Kerry is expected to visit China this month.
Yellen stressed that Washington was not seeking to decouple from the Chinese economy, as Beijing fears, and noted that the United States and China would have nearly $700 billion in trade this year, benefiting both. parts.
She said China has made a lot of progress in recent years, including tackling a serious pollution problem in Beijing.
China, still the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, has also invested in technological innovation – in electric cars, electric batteries and renewable energy – that could lower the cost of reducing emissions. greenhouse gases in the United States and around the world.
“This is one of the most important bilateral and economic and financial relations we have,” Yellen said.