Beijing: Trying to put away months of tension between them, China has told US that the two countries should not treat each other as "rivals", as Washington and Beijing began a high-level dialogue to prepare for a visit to America by President Hu Jintao.
An entire spectrum of issues ranging from Tibet, trade with Taiwan and pressure over Yuan figured in the talks the two White House top envoys had with Prime Minister Wen Jiabao during which Wen said the two countries should not treat each other as rivals.
Instead he counselled that the two countries should work together to tackle the global financial crisis and promote a stable world economic recovery.
The visit by US Deputy National Security Advisor Thomas Donilon and National Economic Council chairman Larry Summers comes at a time when Washington has raised concerns over Chinese military build up in the seas around it and over continued undervaluation of Yuan.
"China and the US should not treat each other as rivals," Premier Jiabao told the delegation.
"China and the US should work together to tackle the global financial crisis and promote a stable world economic recovery," Wen told the delegation when it called on him yesterday adding that deepened political trust, strengthened bilateral and multilateral cooperation and a harmonious atmosphere are key to bilateral ties.
He said the mainstream of current Sino-US relations "is dialogue and cooperation," noting that they have reached an unprecedented level in scope and influence.
The American delegation comprised of economic and diplomatic officials headed by US National Economic Council Chairman Larry Summers and Deputy National Security Adviser Thomas Donilon held talks with the Chinese officials during the past four days.
Despite the placating diplomatic words, tensions between the world`s two biggest economies were palpable in the recent months even after the two sides held high level strategic dialogue few months ago.
Both sides have not yet restored defence ties between the two countries apparently due to reluctance of the Chinese Peoples Liberation Army.
During the past few months, China followed a dual track with US, keeping the strategic, political and economic dialogue open but scaling down all military contacts in protest to this year`s USD 4.6 billion arms sales to Taiwan, which Beijing regards as its estranged province.
The meeting between US President Barrack Obama and Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama also infuriated Beijing.