China and the United States affirmed the importance of their bilateral economic ties, Chinese state-run media said Wednesday, following video talks between Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.
"The two sides believed that the China-U.S. economic relations are very important," Xinhua News Agency said, adding they had "extensive exchanges" on the macroeconomic situation as well as on bilateral and multilateral cooperation.
Issues of mutual concern were also discussed, the news agency said, without elaborating.
Last week, Liu, who serves as China's chief trade negotiator with the United States, spoke with his U.S. counterpart Katherine Tai by phone for their first talks under the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden.
The contacts between the senior officials of the two countries took place amid an intensifying U.S.-China rivalry, with the Biden administration casting a wary eye on Beijing's growing military and economic assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific region as well as on allegations of human rights abuses.
The Biden administration has also been reviewing the bilateral trade relationship following a tit-for-tat tariff war and a subsequent "phase one" trade deal reached last year under the administration of former President Donald Trump.
Yellen, for her part, spoke about the Biden administration's plans to support a strong economic recovery and the importance of cooperating in areas that are in U.S. interests, while at the same time tackling issues of concern, the Treasury Department said in a press release.
During their "introductory virtual meeting," Yellen noted that she looks forward to future discussions with Liu, the statement said. The Xinhua report said the two sides expressed willingness to keep lines of communication open.
The Biden administration has characterized the bilateral relationship as having adversarial aspects but also having cooperative and competitive aspects.