The China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue was created to implement an important agreement reached by the heads of state of the two countries. The mechanism was proposed by the United States and agreed to by China. It was formally launched on September 20, 2006 after serious consultation between the two sides.
Chinese President Hu Jintao held a telephone conversation with US President George W. Bush on August 21, 2006. Bush said the United States hoped that the two countries would strengthen economic dialogue and cooperation to maintain the strong momentum in their trade and economic relations.
Hu said that as China and the United States cement their economic ties, a strengthened economic dialogue between the two countries is conducive to the development of their constructive partnership and will have a positive impact on world economic development as well as global economic stability and security. He indicated that China is willing to continue to keep in contact with the United States in this regard.
In the spirit of implementing the important consensus of the two presidents, US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson visited China from September 19-22 last year to discuss the establishment of the China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue.
Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi held talks with him and they jointly announced its formation. China and the United States issued the Joint Statement on the Inauguration of the China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue on September 20. According to the joint statement, the dialogue will focus on bilateral and global strategic economic issues of common interest and concern. Both sides intend to meet twice a year in alternate capitals.
In December 2006, China and the United States held the first meeting of the Strategic Economic Dialogue. Under the theme of "China's development road and economic development strategy," the dialogue was divided into five sessions (with 11 sub-topics) respectively tackling: Balanced development between urban and rural areas, the sustainable growth of China's economy, trade and investment promotion, energy and environment, and sustainable development. A consensus was reached on several specific issues.