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1st S&ED Round Wins Applause from Leading US Scholars

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The first round of the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED), which ended earlier this week in Washington, D.C., has been widely acclaimed by leading US scholars and experts.

New framework and agenda for future cooperation

Vice President for Studies at the Washington-based Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Douglas Paal, told Xinhua the first dialogue round will "lay the groundwork for reduced misunderstanding and new levels of active cooperation in the next three years."

Paal said the dialogue would benefit US-Chinese relations. However, he suggested the two countries plan and act now in order to review the S&ED and conclude whether it was worthwhile.

Bonnie Glaser, senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, also spoke highly of the S&ED, saying the mechanism will enable the two powers to "set a framework and an agenda for how to cooperate on a broad range of issues."

According to Glaser, the United States and China face a whole range of bilateral and regional issues, from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to Sudan and Iran. The two countries also have a large and growing number of global challenges that they need to work on together, such as climate change, global terrorism and local violence.

Glaser conceded that many of these issues between the United States and China are very challenging and cannot be solved easily, such as combating climate change or achieving sustainable economic growth.

"Hopefully, through dialogue the two sides will gain more confidence in each other and in the bilateral relationship and reaffirm their commitments to working together," she told Xinhua.

In an op-ed published in The Wall Street Journal on Monday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner wrote that "few global problems can be solved by the US or China alone, and few can be solved without the US and China together."

Their view was echoed by Pieter Bottelier, senior adjunct professor of China Studies at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Bottelier said the current crisis has reshaped the world. "The financial crisis and the global recession have changed the international economic and political landscape," he said.

Bottelier, who served as chief of the World Bank's mission in China from 1993-1997, said "it has given the Chinese more international clout and greater self-confidence, especially in the economic and financial arena."

The change has made the first round of the SED more a dialogue of equals and has contributed to the mutual understanding between the two countries, he told Xinhua, stressing that "China's greater self-confidence in the dialogue should not be misinterpreted as arrogance."

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