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US must step up to meet China challenge, says Biden after Xi call

US President Joe Biden

US President Joe Biden, who called his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, told a bipartisan group of US senators that it is critical for Washington to upgrade infrastructure in the wake of rising competition from China. According to a report by Reuters the two leaders held their first phone call but “appeared at odds on most issues” though Xi called for “win-win co-operation.”

“If we don't get moving, they are going to eat our lunch,” Biden told the senators. “They're investing billions of dollars dealing with a whole range of issues that relate to transportation, the environment and a whole range of other things. We just have to step up,” the US president said, the Reuters reported.

However, according to Chinese state backed media organisation Global Times, the phone call between the two leaders “serves as a tone-setter for future bilateral relations in short term and shows that the two sides are willing to push bilateral ties forward in a more positive direction that can manage ties through constructive dialogue and cooperation.”

“Chinese observers said the phone call, arranged on Chinese New Year’s Eve, shows the Biden administration’s goodwill toward the Chinese government and the Chinese people,” Global Times reported.

US-China relations during the Donald Trump administration had nosedived. Several issues came up between the two countries, one of which was also related to the tariff war.

While the world is keeping a close watch on the developments, sources told IndiaNarrative.com that the US under Biden may not be able to deviate significantly from Trump’s charter on China.

Earlier, Janet Yellen, secretary, US treasury department, who took over from Steven Mnuchin, underlined the need to take on China for its “abusive, unfair and illegal practices.”

Yellen has even told the lawmakers that China is guilty of human rights abuses.

Besides, Yellen, US secretary of State Antony Blinken, who endorsed former President Trump’s stand on China, too in an interview to CNN said that Washington must engage with Beijing from a position of strength.

China, which is getting more and more isolated globally, is looking to rebuild its relations with other countries including the US.