Obama touches on economy, climate change in talks with Hu

0 CommentsPrint E-mail Xinhua, November 17, 2009
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United States President Barack Obama said Tuesday that he and Chinese President Hu Jintao had reached agreement on a range of issues, covering climate change, trade and nuclear non-proliferation.

At a joint press conference with Hu at Beijing's Great Hall of the People, Obama said, "We meet here at a time when the relationship between the United States and China has never been more important to our collective future.

"The major challenges of the 21st Century, from climate change to nuclear proliferation to economic recovery, are challenges that touch both our nations and challenges that neither of our nations can solve by acting alone."

"The United States welcomes China's efforts in playing a greater role on the world stage, a role in which a growing economy is joined by growing responsibilities."

He said they had talked of the need to build a positive, cooperative and comprehensive relationship between the two countries.

China pulls US out of recession

Top of the agenda had been the requirements for sustained economic recovery that ensured new jobs and a lasting prosperity.

"China's partnership has proved critical in our efforts to pull ourselves out of the worst recession in generations," said Obama.

They had agreed to advance the pledge made at the G20 summit and Pittsburgh and pursue more balanced economic growth.

It was "a strategy where America saves more, spends less, reduces our long-term debt and where China makes adjustments across a broad range of policies to rebalance its economy and spur domestic demand," said Obama.

"This will lead to increased US exports and jobs on the one hand and higher living standards in China on the other."

Maintaining open markets and free flows of commerce would contribute to prosperity in both countries, he said.

"I was pleased to note the Chinese commitment made in past statements to move to a more market-oriented exchange rate over time. I emphasized in our discussions as had others in the region that doing so, based on economic fundamentals, would make an essential contribution to the global rebalancing effort."

New initiatives to tackle climate change

He said the two presidents had agreed to a series of important new initiatives to tackle climate change, including a joint clean energy research center, and agreements on energy efficiency, renewable energy, cleaner uses of coal, electric vehicles and shale gas.

They had also agreed to work towards a successful outcome at the climate change talks in Copenhagen next month, including an accord that covered all the issues and had "immediate operational effect."

"This kind of comprehensive agreement would be an important step forward in an effort to rally the world around a solution to our climate challenge," he said. "And we agreed that each of us would take significant mitigation actions and stand behind these commitments."

Obama also said that there would be no solution to climate change without the efforts of both China and the US, the two largest producers and consumers of energy.

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