“US Preps for G20 Summit, Concerned About China’s Spoiler Role.”

In response to questions about the impact of India-China border tensions on the G20 Summit in New Delhi, US National Security Advisor Sullivan emphasized that it’s China’s decision to determine its role at the summit. He stated that if China chooses to act as a “spoiler,” that option is available to them. However, he encouraged China to engage constructively in areas such as climate, multilateral development, bank reform, debt relief, and technology while setting aside geopolitical issues for the sake of problem-solving and benefiting developing nations.

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Chinese President Xi Jinping decided not to attend the G20 Summit, with Premier Li Qiang leading the Chinese delegation, as announced by China’s foreign ministry. The summit, hosted by India on September 9 and 10, will focus on various priorities, including climate, health, digital technology, and global infrastructure investment.

Sullivan stressed that President Joe Biden would emphasize the importance of all G20 members actively participating in the summit, with a particular focus on addressing Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine. Biden would call for a just and lasting peace in line with international law and the UN Charter. The United States remains committed to the G20 as a crucial forum for global problem-solving.

Furthermore, Sullivan mentioned that despite the international economy facing significant challenges, the United States is eager to host the G20 in 2026, underscoring its commitment to the forum. Meanwhile, Asia Society Vice President Daniel Russel noted that China’s decision to skip the G20 Summit in New Delhi reflects strained India-China relations. Xi’s absence raises questions about the relationship between the two countries and the current state of affairs between their leaders. Li’s substitution, while significant, lacks the economic decision-making authority of previous Chinese prime ministers like Zhu Rongzhi.

Russel also speculated that Xi’s decision might be an attempt to pressure Washington into concessions, such as easing export restrictions on advanced technology, as evidenced by Beijing’s reluctance to commit to attending the November APEC Summit in San Francisco. The absence of Xi and Putin from the G20 allows Biden to take a more dominant role in shaping the agenda, especially on issues related to Russia, clean energy transition, and addressing the significant debt burden faced by developing nations, much of which is owed to China.

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