President Barack Obama says he wants U.S.-China relations to be defined by more cooperation and better handling of disagreements.
A White House statement says the pledge was made during a phone call Monday between Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping.
The statement said the two leaders also discussed shared regional and global challenges, including Iran’s and North Korea’s nuclear programs.
Obama said Iran must show its nuclear program is “exclusively peaceful.” He called for greater U.S.-China cooperation in the ongoing Geneva talks.
He also stressed the need for “enhanced communication and coordination” with China to ensure North Korea meets its denuclearization commitments.
The phone call follows annual talks last week between top U.S. and Chinese leaders in Beijing, where the White House said “important progress” was made.
There has been growing tension between Washington and Beijing, especially over mutual charges of cyber hacking and China’s maritime disputes.
At last week’s talks, U.S. officials warned that China’s far-reaching and disputed claims in the East and South China Seas risk triggering conflicts with its neighbors.
Washington says it takes no side in the sea disputes, but it has developed closer military ties with several of China’s rival claimants.
The talks also apparently did little to resolve U.S. allegations that Chinese hackers are stealing trade secrets and other information from American companies.
China has angrily rejected the charges. It instead accuses the U.S. of spying on Chinese targets, pointing to revelations by former American security contractor Edward Snowden.