Relations with the United States occupy an important place in China’s foreign policy. Leaders in both Beijing and Washington have emphasized the relationship between the two countries as the most important bilateral relationship this century. President Xi Jinping and President Obama have put priority on developing China–US relations (Xi, 2015, and Goldberg, 2016). The Cold War once separated China and the United States. It was the mutual agreement on the common threat from the former Soviet Union that brought Beijing and Washington together in the early 1970s. After the end of the Cold War and the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991, geo-economics became more prominent than geopolitics in US–China relations. With increasingly broad and active economic interactions between the two countries, it seems that US–China cooperation is growing, but frictions and misperceptions are rising as well. The Taiwan issue has been a critical issue in relations between Beijing and Washington. This issue is becoming increasingly interesting due not only to changing perceptions in the two capitals but also rapid development inside Taiwan, including power transition from the pro-status quo Nationalist Party to the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party in 2016. It is reasonable to argue that Sino-American relations have evolved from a “fragile relationship” (Harding, 1992) to a truly interdependent “complex relationship” (Shambaugh, 2013b) or “codependency” (Roach, 2014).
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