Two Areas Where The U.S. And China Can Still Work Together

Russell Flannery,, October 8, 2022

U.S.-China relations have been strained, but amidst the disagreements, there are areas of promise for collaboration between the two countries. At a forum organized by the Asia Society’s Center for China Analysis, experts highlighted two key areas where the U.S. and China can work together: the fight against cancer and the push towards a carbon-neutral future. With cancer being a common enemy globally, there is a call for more collaboration in clinical trials between the U.S. and China to accelerate the development of new treatments for patients. Increasing diversity among trial participants is deemed crucial for the effectiveness of these trials due to the varied scope of cancer diseases worldwide.

Furthermore, there is potential for U.S.-China collaboration in achieving environmental goals, especially in the realm of renewable energy and decarbonization. China’s commitment to peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060 presents opportunities for joint efforts with the U.S., focusing on motivation and policy implementation rather than technological challenges. Private organizations like the Institute of Public & Environmental Affairs in China play a role in advancing environmental efforts through international outreach and initiatives.

To enable substantial collaboration between the U.S. and China, there is a need for mutual decisions by governments to create space for development. This collaboration can be fostered by identifying critical issues that could lead to crises and implementing measures to reduce the risk of accidental conflicts, particularly in geopolitical hotspots like Taiwan and the South China Sea. Leaders from both countries can encourage collaboration in areas of common strategic interest such as global public health, climate change action, and financial stability. Despite the current tensions, there are rational grounds for hope as both countries share common interests and values that can be leveraged for productive collaboration.

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