US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan met with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on September 16-17 in Malta. This high-level engagement was convened to address various topics on their bilateral agenda, casting a spotlight on the rising importance of the US-China relationship in the evolving global political arena.
Deep Dive into Key Issues
As stated by the White House in a recent press release, "The two sides discussed key issues in the U.S.-China bilateral relationship, global and regional security issues, Russia’s war against Ukraine, and cross-Strait issues, among other topics." Both nations reaffirmed their stance on the importance of peace and stability, particularly emphasizing the Taiwan Strait.
Notably, the commitment to preserving and further enhancing the strategic channel of communication between the two giants was evident. The press statement conveyed, "The two sides committed to maintain this strategic channel of communication and to pursue additional high-level engagement and consultations in key areas between the United States and the People’s Republic of China in the coming months."
Building on Past Engagements
Lending context to the recent diplomatic engagement, the White House highlighted how these discussions built upon prior meetings, particularly noting the significant interactions between President Biden and President Xi in Bali, Indonesia, in November 2022.
The nature of the Malta discussions was described as "candid, substantive, and constructive." Furthermore, in emphasizing the significance of such meetings, the White House mentioned, "This meeting [in Malta] was part of ongoing efforts to maintain open lines of communication and responsibly manage the relationship." In a related development, it is of interest to note that Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova announced the forthcoming meeting between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Chinese counterpart set to take place in Moscow on September 18.
This meeting underscores the intricate web of diplomacy, as nations work to navigate the multifaceted challenges and opportunities of the 21st century.