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Chinese premier, U.S. president meet on relations

BALI, Indonesia, Nov. 19 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and U.S. President Barak Obama met here Saturday to discuss relations between their two countries and other international issues of common concern.

The two leaders were meeting on the sidelines of East Asian summits on this Indonesian resort island.

Wen said at the meeting it was in the interests of both China and the United States and the world to maintain steady and sound development of bilateral ties.

Wen recalled the successful meeting between Chinese President Hu Jintao and President Obama in Hawaii earlier this month, saying China was willing to join with the United States in actively implementing the important consensus reached between the top leaders of the two countries and unswervingly promote development of the China-U.S. cooperative partnership.

The nature of China-U.S. economic and trade ties was to realize mutual benefit and a win-win situation, Wen said, adding that, at a time when the current international economic situation remained harsh, strengthening China-U.S. economic and trade cooperation would be of particularly great significance, and, more essentially, would be of realistic necessity.

The trade imbalance between China and the United States was mainly a structural issue, he said. To solve this problem, it was essential to make efforts to deepen bilateral economic and trade cooperation.

Wen proposed that China and U.S. investment and trade cooperation be developed at a higher level and on a larger scale, including increasing China's imports from the United States, encouraging Chinese enterprises to invest in the U.S., and deepening bilateral cooperation in the high-end manufacturing sector, the new energy sector, the medical and public health field, the energy conservation and environmental protection industry and high and new technology and infrastructure development.

Therefore, the U.S. side should adopt as early as possible practical actions in easing restrictions on the export of high-tech products to China, on access to investment in the U.S. by Chinese enterprises, and on the provision of a fair competition environment for Chinese enterprises, according to the Chinese premier.

Wen also said China had continued to reform the Chinese yuan exchange rate mechanism based on the general adoption of the market principle, with the achievement of obvious success.

From late September to early November, there was speculation of the devaluation of the yuan exchange rate on overseas non-delivery forward foreign exchange markets, which was a market reflection of the Chinese yuan exchange rate rather than a result of deliberate action.

China was paying close attention to any new change in the yuan's exchange rate, and would steadily advance reforms and increase flexibility of a two-way fluctuation of the Chinese yuan exchange rate on the basis of initiative, gradualness and controllability, Wen said.

At the same meeting, Obama said U.S.-China relations were one of the most important relationships for both the United States and China, and for the world as well.

In the past three years, the two sides had constructive dialogue and cooperation, he said. The two sides should, in a spirit of cooperation and mutual understanding, continue to promote the settlement of differences in the economy and trade and other fields, and promote continued progress in the relationship, which was of important strategic significance, Obama said.

The two leaders also exchanged views on other international issues of common concern.

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