US and China Restart Climate Change Talks at G20

On 14 November 2022, US President Biden and Chinese President Xi held bilateral talks in the sidelines of the G20 Summit scheduled to take place in Bali from 15 to 16 November 2022.

Both sides agreed to resume talks on #ClimateChange amidst rising tensions over the three T, viz, Taiwan, Trade and Technology. Currently, US and China are respectively the first and second top emitters of greenhouse gases in the world. Thus, any Climate Solidarity Pact would be quite meaningless without the commitment from the top two polluters.

In the run-up to the meeting, President Biden indicated that he wished ‘to responsibly manage the competition’ between US and China.

As per usual protocol, during a first bilateral meeting between leaders, the one who has been longer in office plays the host. Thus, US President Biden and his entourage had to drive to Xi’s hotel for the meeting. As a quid pro quo, for the handshake and photo session, Xi gave up the right side, traditionally reserved for the host.

It would thus appear that both sides are filled with bonhomie and already doing exerting some effort to make the other side feel at ease. This was a good sign for things to come. The tone of the initial opening remarks was therefore quite cordial and marked a clear demarcation to what happened in Alaska when Foreign Tsar Yang Jiechi and Tony Blinken met back in March 2021.

The meeting lasted over three hours and President held a solo Press Conference afterwards.