BEIJING: The United States Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman said Monday that this year would be a good one for bilateral relations.
The two countries would "come together quickly" and "focus on global issues during the rest of this year," Huntsman said in an interview with Xinhua.
"We've had some issues about which we've disagreed, but we have always been able to solve our problems and move on to the bigger issues," he said.
He was attending the opening ceremony for the Eighth Chinese National Round of Jessup International Law Moot Court Contest at the Renmin University of China.
Huntsman said he was "very optimistic" about the US-China relationship as it had gone "constantly upward" since the two sides established diplomatic relations more than three decades ago.
He also said that he respected China's history and culture and understood that a country's political and legal systems were shaped by these two things.
Relations between China and the US have seen tensions time and again, highlighted by trade frictions, and more recently by the US arms sales to Taiwan, US President Barack Obama's meeting with the Dalai Lama.
Sino-US trade disputes have risen after the global financial crisis pressured both economies from the late 2008, ranging from exchange rate to trade deficits.
US President Barack Obama claimed early last month he would be "much tougher" with China on exchange rates and trade to ensure the price of US goods was "not artificially inflated."
The United States imposed duties on a number of Chinese imports in recent months. In a latest event, the United States last week imposed preliminary duties ranging from 11 to 13 percent on steel pipes from China.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said during an online chat with Internet users Saturday that China did not want 2010 to be "an unpeaceful year" for trade and economic relations with the US, hoping that bilateral trade disputes would ease.
Wen said good Sino-US trade relations would bring fundamental benefits to the peoples of both nations, but both sides needed to make good efforts for this to happen.
Trade disputes between the two countries should be resolved through "negotiations on an equal footing," not sanctions, Wen said in his second annual online chat with the public Saturday.