Chinese President To Attend State Dinner, Hold Talks With Obama


President Obama will host a formal state dinner for his Chinese counterpart on Wednesday -- part of a day that will include bilateral talks and a joint news conference.

Chinese President Hu Jintao is on a three-day trip to the United States for talks on trade, currency and North Korea. It will be the eighth face-to-face meeting between the two leaders.

Hu will stress the importance of a comprehensive partnership between the two nations to help ensure stability worldwide, Chinese state media reported, despite their differences on issues such as human rights and currency controls.

In addition to Obama, the leader is scheduled to meet with top legislators and business executives and then visit Chicago.

Hu arrived at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland on Tuesday to a welcome that included an honor guard and a military band that played the national anthems of both countries. Vice President Joe Biden greeted him on arrival.

Later Tuesday, he had a small dinner at the White House with Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and National Security Adviser Tom Donilon.

"This provides a bit of an informal setting in which to have some of these discussions," White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said about the dinner.

On Wednesday, the two leaders will hold bilateral talks followed by a joint news conference. Hu will be the guest of honor at a formal state dinner in the evening.