U.S. Vice President Joe Biden says Chinese cyber-theft of U.S. intellectual property must stop.
Speaking Wednesday at the State Department during annual high-level talks between the world’s two largest economies, Biden said both the United States and China will benefit from an “open, secure and reliable Internet.”
Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang said the two countries need to increase their trust through dialogue, but added China will never accept views that will hinder its development.
Wang added Sino-U.S. cooperation goes “beyond bilateral relations” to have a global impact.
The annual talks, now in their fifth year, involve senior officials including U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi.
Kerry said the talks allow the two countries to speak candidly about their differences to constructively manage them and increase understanding.
He said this year’s discussions have created working groups to investigate issues including cyber security and climate change.
Chinese state media reported Wednesday the first working group on U.S.-China cyber security went well, with both sides “candidly” discussing the matter and agreeing to expand cooperation.
U.S. officials say they raised the issue of economic-related hacking during the session. They also said the two sides discussed international norms for cyber space.
Washington and Beijing have recently traded accusations of cyber-hacking attacks. The issue has threatened to become a major irritant in bilateral relations.
Before the talks, rights groups and lawmakers called for the United States to prominently raise concerns about China’s human-rights record, a particularly sensitive topic for Beijing.
A bipartisan group of top U.S. lawmakers also called for the United States to press China on a wide range of economic issues, including protecting intellectual property and ensuring China opens its markets to more foreign competition.