Biden claims US place in Asia-Pacific and says he is not seeking war with China

San Francisco, US, Nov 16 (EFE).- United States President Joe Biden claimed on Thursday that the US is a “Pacific power.”

“I’ve said for a long time the United States is a Pacific power,” Biden said.

“I had that brief discussion yesterday with President Xi. He’d asked me before, I reminded him why we’re so engaged in the Pacific: It’s because we’re a Pacific nation. And because of us, there’s been peace and security in the region, allowing you to grow. He didn’t disagree,” the US president added.

Biden made the remarks in San Francisco during a business meeting on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, which takes place on Thursday and Friday.

He also insisted that the US is not “decoupling” from China, only “de-risking” and “diversifying,” after Xi criticized his “protectionist” economic approach, particularly regarding supply chains, ahead of their meeting.

Biden reiterated that he does not seek conflict with China and that his intention is to responsibly manage competition between the two powers, comments that drew applause from the audience.

However, the president acknowledged that it is not all “kumbaya” with Beijing, saying that Washington does not agree with some Chinese trade practices, which is why it is seeking to reduce its dependence on the Asian giant for supply chains.

On Wednesday, Biden and Xi showed some rapprochement in a meeting aimed at stabilizing the tumultuous bilateral relationship, in which they reached agreements to combat fentanyl trafficking and reopen military communication channels.

However, in a press conference at the end of the meeting, Biden called Xi a “dictator” in response to a shouted question from a reporter, drawing criticism from the Chinese government, which called the remark “irresponsible.”

Biden is going to the APEC summit with the intention of convincing its members that the United States wants to foster trade relations with the entire region, according to Mike Pyle’s statements, one of the president’s advisers, in a press conference Thursday.

According to him, the 21 APEC economies have invested $1.7 trillion in the US economy and created $2.3 million jobs. In turn, American companies have invested about $1.4 trillion in APEC economies.

This is the third time the United States has hosted APEC, following Seattle in 1993 and Honolulu in 2011.

APEC met virtually in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Its leaders met in Bangkok last year, but Biden did not attend because he had to attend the wedding of one of his granddaughters, and US Vice President Kamala Harris attended in his place.

APEC, a forum founded in 1989 that currently represents about 40% of the planet’s population, brings together 21 economies from Asia and the Americas bathed by the Pacific Ocean: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, United States and Vietnam

By Nadeem faisal Baiga