US President Joe Biden has met his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping and said they have a “responsibility” to show the two countries can “manage our differences”.
He added that the current state of China-US relations was not in the interests of both countries and that they needed to “steer the rudder”, according to state broadcaster CCTV.
In the first in-person talks between both leaders since Mr Biden became president, Mr Xi also said they should think about and clarify the direction of development of their own countries, as well as consider the way to get along with other countries and the world.
Mr Biden said: “As the leaders of our two nations, we share responsibility, in my view, to show that China and the United States can manage our differences, prevent competition from becoming anything ever near conflict, and to find ways to work together on urgent global issues that require our mutual cooperation.”
While attending a gathering of southeast Asian nations at the weekend, Mr Biden said of US relations with China: “We have very little misunderstanding.”
He told reporters in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on Sunday: “We just got to figure out where the red lines are and… what are the most important things to each of us going into the next two years.”
Referring to Mr Xi remaining in power for at least another five years – breaking with a decades-long precedent that limits the terms of Chinese leaders – Mr Biden added: “His circumstance has changed, to state the obvious, at home.”
The president said of his own situation that he was “coming in stronger” after successful midterm elections that saw the Democrats retain control of the Senate.