Mr. Biden raised issues about human rights abuses in Xinjiang, Tibet and Hong Kong, and about China’s “unfair commerce and financial insurance policies” harming American staff, the White Home assertion mentioned. Mr. Xi, in line with China’s personal readout, mentioned that American assist for Taiwan was “taking part in with fireplace,” and explicitly warned that the world risked slipping again into the superpower confrontations of a half-century in the past.

“Partaking in ideological demarcation, camp division, group confrontation, will inevitably convey catastrophe to the world,” Mr. Xi mentioned, a transparent reference to a pillar of the brand new administration’s technique for difficult China by teaming up with like-minded nations that worry China or oppose its authoritarian mannequin. “The consequence of the Chilly Conflict usually are not far-off.”

With that reference, Mr. Xi plunged immediately into the controversy now underway in Washington about whether or not the 2 powers are descending into one thing akin to the Cold War, or whether or not the deep financial, commerce and technological hyperlinks between China and the U.S. make any comparability to the previous United States-Soviet Union relationship unattainable.

The tone of the assembly was a reminder that China, maybe inevitably, stays what Mr. Biden and his high advisers have forged as the best geopolitical problem to the US in its historical past. They’ve rejected the Chilly Conflict comparisons as overly simplistic, and as Mr. Biden’s nationwide safety adviser, Jake Sullivan, put it, “Now we have the selection not to do this.”

“China goes to be an element within the worldwide system for the foreseeable future — it’s not going anyplace,” Mr. Sullivan mentioned final week throughout a speech to the Lowy Institute in Australia. “And the US isn’t going anyplace, and we’re not going anyplace within the Indo-Pacific both. And so we’re going to must discover ways to cope with that actuality.”

Though the 2 leaders have spoken by phone twice this 12 months, the convention was supposed to duplicate the extra thorough dialogue of points in earlier summits between the US and China — one thing that has not been doable as a result of pandemic and political preoccupations have saved Mr. Xi from touring since January 2020.