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November 03, 2023
Focus This Week
A community space to discuss the China-U.S. relationship and beyond.

Dear Focus Reader,

Chinese leader Xi Jinping has agreed, in principle, to meet with U.S. President Joe Biden on the sidelines of the upcoming APEC summit in San Francisco—at least according to the White House. While the meeting has not yet been confirmed by Beijing, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre announced the intention for the meeting, which was followed by another senior Biden official clarifying, "There is an agreement in principle to meet in San Francisco in November. We are still working through important details needed to finalize those plans." Jean-Pierre also emphasized the significance of this diplomatic conversation, characterizing the current state of U.S.-China competition as "intense" but expressing optimism that the meeting will foster a constructive dialogue.

This meeting would mark the first in-person contact between the two leaders since their encounter in November at the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia. It would follow recent diplomatic outreach from both sides, including visits to Beijing by senior U.S. cabinet officials and climate envoy John Kerry, as well as Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi's recent trip to Washington.

Meanwhile, California Governor Gavin Newsom concluded a visit to China on Sunday, where he focused on subnational collaboration, particularly on climate issues. The trip culminated in a meeting with Xi, where Newsom encouraged the Chinese leader to attend the APEC summit, setting a more conciliatory tone for the impending Biden-Xi meeting.

Stay up to date on our latest Focus content, including topics on the recent diplomatic visit by China's Foreign Minister to the U.S., the U.S.'s evolving post-Cold War peace strategy, historic symbolism behind China's Belt and Road Initiative, and how Southeast Asian countries are navigating Sino-American strategic challenges.

Additionally, watch out next week for more exclusive content covering these vital subjects and beyond from our upcoming Hong Kong Forum on U.S.-China Relations. This significant gathering on November 9-10th will convene key figures from government, business, and civil society to delve into discussions regarding the bilateral relationship and broader global issues. We're excited to welcome luminaries like Charlene Barshefsky, Max Baucus, Stephen Roach, and other renowned experts. For further details, check out

- Team Focus

Focus Insights
Quote of the Week
"Arguably, in the face of the great changes in the world, greater understanding in both Chinese and American societies is of strategic significance."
Li Yan
Deputy Director of the Institute of American Studies, China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations

Read More

Notable Number

The number of feet a Chinese J-11 fighter allegedly passed by an American B-52 bomber over the South China Sea.

Read more in "Restoring Some Normalcy" by David Shambaugh Gaston Sigur Professor of Asian Studies and Director of the China Policy Program, George Washington University

Discover More
A look into cultural stories from our affiliate platform, The China Current.

Turning Waste into Energy

Watch Video
Humans throw away millions of tons of trash each day. And managing that waste is a huge feat for cities, particularly those with large populations. In many countries, landfilling and trash burning are common solutions. But in China, leaders have big goals to switch from landfilling to cleanly burning waste to produce electricity for its larger cities.
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Question of the Week

In our Focus Insights section, we shared an article by Vasilis Trigas discussing how Washington's post-Cold War approach to China has evolved through the years.

We want to hear from you:

What role do you believe Democratic Peace Theory plays in shaping international relations? To what extent do you think it has influenced the strategic mindset of post-Cold War America and its foreign policy?

Submit your thoughts to for a chance to be featured in next week's Focus This Week.

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About Focus This Week

Prepared by China-US Focus editorial teams in Hong Kong and New York, this weekly newsletter offers you snap shots of latest trends and developments emerging from China and the U.S. every week. It is a community space to exchange thoughts and ideas about the China-U.S. relationship and beyond.

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