Photo source: FIFA

OnePacificNews, June 25 2015

It’s USA vs China all week, starting with the 7th US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Washington DC from Monday, June 22 to Wednesday, and ending in Ottawa June 26, Friday with their women’s national soccer teams squaring off for a semi-final place in the World Cup.

Hundreds of senior officials from both countries, led by US Secretary of State John Kerry and China’s State Councilor Yang Jiechi, attended the three-day conference to discuss and improve areas of mutual cooperation as well as address points of friction. The talks seemed to have ended on a positive note.

Both sides described their meetings as helpful in advancing bilateral relations even though they agreed that they would need further discussion and negotiations to bridge differences over key issues.

According to the US State Department, the two countries have agreed to maintain high-level exchanges, led by their Presidents who will “maintain frequent and close communication” with each other.

Among the key areas of agreement, they have pledged to advance bilateral military relations, engage in confidence building measures, hold their regular strategic security dialogue (SSD), work together to address the challenges associated with the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction-related technologies, continue cooperation to enhance and promote anti-corruption initiatives through existing multilateral frameworks, and deepen and strengthen law enforcement cooperation.

The two countries will end a tough week of talks with a game of football that is generating a lot of international interest.

According to USA Today, the two countries’ quarter-final clash in Canada’s capital city has become the hottest ticket of the Women’s Soccer World Cup for 2015, with seat prices selling at more than five times face value. The US, losing finalist in the previous World Cup in 2011, are favourites to beat China.

Somewhat like geopolitical contests, one side has to win as the rules do not allow for draws.

One Pacific News Editor