Apr 21, 2021 01:50 PM

China Confirms President Xi to Attend Biden Climate Summit

What’s new: President Xi Jinping will attend and deliver a speech at the U.S.-initiated climate summit on Thursday, at the invitation of U.S. President Joe Biden, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying announced Wednesday without elaboration.

Why it matters: The announcement indicates the Chinese leadership is willing to engage with the U.S. on climate issues despite tense bilateral relations overall. It adds momentum to global efforts to address climate change including the U.N. climate conference in the U.K. later this year.

The announcement also came just days after the two countries’ top climate officials met in Shanghai last week. They issued a joint statement affirming their commitment to cooperate on tackling the “climate crisis.”

Last Friday, Xi held a virtual trilateral summit on climate issues with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. An advisor to the French presidential office was quoted by Politico as saying that the trilateral meeting was not a “counter summit” to the Biden summit.

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