Woodside Summit and the San Francisco Vision; Fentanyl; Real Estate; Applied Materials and SMIC
“We made progress” was President Biden’s conclusion at his press conference after his meeting with Xi Jinping.
The “Woodside Summit” looked like it went as well as was expected and now the PRC side is talking up the “San Francisco Vision 旧金山愿景”. Whether or not the US side fully embraces the PRC’s definition of the vision remains to be seen. From the PRC side the vision contains five pillars:
jointly establish correct recognition 共同树立正确认知;
effectively manage differences 共同有效管控分歧;
advance mutually beneficial cooperation 共同推进互利合作;
shoulder major country responsibilities 共同承担大国责任;
promote people-to-people exchanges 共同促进人文交流
The US readout reiterates the US framing that the "United States and China are in competition", something the PRC wants to reject, at least publicly, but the PRC agreed that both the US and PRC would include the phrase “responsibly managing competitive aspects of the relationship” in their respective readouts. That seems like possibly an interesting shift in the PRC’s recognition of the state of the relationship.
It sounds like the most important outcome of yesterday’s meeting, beyond the fact that the two leaders are talking again, is an agreement to restart coordination around cracking down on things Fentanyl-related. Of course there is reason to be skeptical of real action from the PRC side given the history, but I think there may be reason for optimism that there will be some more meaningful actions to help stem the flow of fentanyl, precursor chemicals and pill presses.
Some of the other specific outcomes, to quote the Global Times, include:
China-US government talks on AI, to establish a working group on counter-narcotics cooperation, and to resume, on the basis of equality and respect, high-level military-to-military communication, the China-US Defense Policy Coordination Talks, and the China-US Military Maritime Consultative Agreement meetings and to conduct telephone conversations between theater commanders.
They also agreed to work toward a significant further increase in scheduled passenger flights early next year and to expand educational, student, youth, cultural, sports and business exchanges.
The Friday People’s Daily front page is all about Xi’s visit:
We may be entering a period of relative calm in the US-China relationship, though there is no reason to think that period will be more than a tactical stabilization.