Is the Strategic and Economic Dialogue between Beijing and Washington still working? As each round gets ever larger, it doesn’t seem necessarily to generate more success.
The intent of the semi-annual high level talks is to coordinate and contain the many big issues that comprise the increasingly complex China-U.S. relationship. Regular discussion is certainly better than none and at the working officials level understanding has certainly been improved even if the process remains cumbersome. But the most recent set didn’t have much by way of policy accomplishments and were dominated by two external issues: North Korea and the euro crisis.
The two sides do not seem to have made any substantive progress on the first one, the only one of the pair that the two countries could directly effect. In Washington, now in election season (as if it ever isn’t) that only reinforces the doubts of the effectiveness of the talks caused by the lack of progress on the currency issue.