HANOI: President Hu Jintao said yesterday that "wisdom and patience" are needed to find solutions to the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula.
He made the remarks during 75 minutes of talks with US President George W. Bush on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) forum, which concluded yesterday.
Hu expressed keenness to work with all parties, including the United States, for the resumption of the Six-Party Talks at an early date.
"We should insist on peaceful dialogue to find practical solutions with wisdom and patience to achieve the denuclearization of the peninsula at an early date," Hu said.
He urged all parties to honour the commitments made in a joint statement in September last year.
In the statement, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) committed to abandoning all nuclear weapons and nuclear programmes, while the US affirmed that it has no nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula and has no intention of attacking or invading the DPRK.
But follow-up discussions last November failed to make any progress on implementing the deal and the six-nation talks have been stalled since then.
Pyongyang drew international outcry by conducting a nuclear test on October 9.
Bush said that China and the United States realize that working together can accomplish a lot for global security.
"China is a very important nation and the United States believes strongly that by working together we can help solve problems such as with North Korea (the DPRK) and Iran," the US president said.
Wang Yusheng, a senior diplomatic researcher, said there have been a series of strategic dialogue meetings between China and the United States this year on political and economic issues.
"The increasing consensus reached through high-level exchanges is bringing about more co-operation in areas of common concern," Wang said.
This year, Hu and Bush have met three times, had four telephone conversations and maintained an exchange of letters.
"It is fair to say that we have kept in very close touch and promoted China-US relations," said Hu.
On the Iranian nuclear issue, Hu urged all parties to "be patient and calm" and engage in a dialogue with Teheran to find an effective solution.
Bush said the United Nations Security Council should adopt a resolute and rational attitude towards the Iranian nuclear issue.
On the Taiwan question, Hu urged the US to handle it properly by keeping commitments it made and not sending wrong signals to Taiwan "independence" secessionist forces so as to safeguard Sino-US strategic interests.
Bush said that his country understands the sensitivity of the question as well as its impact on Sino-US relations. The US Government's policy on Taiwan remained unchanged, he pledged.
China and US will hold their first strategic economic dialogue next month, according to Hu.
Vice-Premier Wu Yi and US Secretary of Treasury Henry M. Paulson will lead the delegations.
Hu noted that bilateral trade has expanded rapidly. According to US figures, US exports to China in the first seven months of this year rose 35 per cent. Bilateral trade reached US$211.63 billion last year, up 24.8 per cent over the previous year. China enjoyed a surplus of US$114.17 billion last year.
Bush admitted there are some problems in bilateral trade. "Nevertheless, we both adopt a spirit of mutual respect and the desire to work through our problems for the common good of our peoples."
Hu also called for increasing co-operation in the Asia-Pacific region to maintain peace, stability and prosperity. The two sides should expand exchanges in such sectors as anti-terrorism, non-proliferation, defence and energy, he said.
Qin Jize in Beijing contributed to the story
(China Daily 11/20/2006 page1)