U.S. and China to hold deputy-level bilateral talks on debt

The United States and China will hold deputy-level talks between their finance officials on Friday to discuss debt and other issues on the sidelines of a G20 finance meet in India, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Thursday, ahead of a meeting of G20 finance ministers and central bank governors near Bengaluru, that communication between the United States and China was important for “the sake of the entire globe”.
One of the sources, both of whom declined to be named as they were not authorised to talk to the media, said a range of multilateral issues would be discussed at the Friday meeting, including debt.

A U.S. Treasury spokesperson declined to comment when asked about the planned meeting. China’s Ministry of Finance and its central bank did not immediately respond to a request seeking comment.

The United States has repeatedly criticised China over what it considers to be “foot-dragging” on debt relief for dozens of low-and middle-income countries including Sri Lanka.

China, the world’s largest bilateral creditor, urged G20 nations on Friday to conduct a fair, objective and in-depth analysis of the causes of global debt issues and to “resolve the problem in a comprehensive and effective manner.”