Washington DC, 23 December 2022 (TDI): The United States (US) Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, held a telephone conversation with the Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China, Wang Yi.

Both dignitaries reviewed the growing COVID crisis in China, the Russia-Ukraine conflict, and the threats it poses to global peace and security.

The US State Department reported that Blinken discussed the need to keep open lines of communication between US and Chinese officials.

Blinken expressed his desire for China to bring the outbreak “under control” at a news briefing held before the disclosure of the phone call. He also offered to assist Beijing in its efforts to limit the virus as the main provider of COVID-19 vaccinations.

“Beijing has not formally requested such aid to this point, but the US is absolutely prepared to assist anyone who asks for it if they think it’s valuable.” The Secretary continued.

Chinese Foreign Minister expressed optimism for improved ties. Along these lines, he stated, “There ought to be a fresh vibe in the new year. Globally, people are generally hopeful that Sino-US relations will stop deteriorating and improve.”

Also read: Xi Jinping hopes for China-US ties to get back on positive course

The Foreign Minister also highlighted that “zero-sum thinking” can only lead to mutual weariness and a head-on collision. He reiterated that China & US must find a way to coexist & work together to ensure citizens’ well-being & international peace.

Notably, Secretary Blinken will visit China earlier next year. His travel was decided upon during the November summit talks between American President Joe Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Bali, Indonesia.

US-China relations

Relations between China and the United States have become strained in recent months. This happened due to visits by US lawmakers, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, to Taiwan despite objections from Beijing.

Even after President Xi and Vice President Biden agreed to continue communication in several areas during the G20 summit in November, relations have not improved.

Also read: China is ready to advance relations with Australia; Xi Jinping

The disagreement resulted in increased Chinese military activity around the island, as well as condemnation of the trips. Similarly, the Biden administration has imposed export restrictions on advanced semiconductors & chip-making equipment from China.