White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan met with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi over the weekend, officials said Sunday, in the latest effort to ease tensions between the superpowers.
Sullivan and Wang met in the Mediterranean island nation of Malta on Saturday and Sunday, according to a White House statement.
"This meeting was part of ongoing efforts to maintain open lines of communication and responsibly manage the relationship," the statement said.
President Joe Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping have not talked or met since a summit in Bali last year but US officials say they are working to renew contact between the two leaders.
A string of high-level US officials, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, have met recently with Chinese officials to prepare a possible Xi-Biden meeting. The White House said Sullivan and Wang "committed to maintain this strategic channel of communication and to pursue additional high-level engagement." A Chinese government statement on the Malta meeting largely echoed the US version, saying "the two sides conducted candid, substantive and constructive strategic communication."