Chinese President Hu Jintao and US president-elect Barack Obama have discussed Taiwan and the global financial crisis by telephone, China's Foreign Ministry said on Sunday, dpa reported.
Hu told Obama that bilateral relations could improve if the two sides showed respect for each other's concerns and "properly handle sensitive issues ... particularly the Taiwan issue," the ministry reported on its website.
The ministry quoted Obama as saying late Saturday that resolving the current financial crisis needed the close cooperation of every national government.
Obama said he hoped that China and the United States would strengthen cooperation at the international summit on the financial crisis and the global economy on November 15.
"The relationship between the United States and China is the most important relationship on the current international stage," the ministry quoted Obama as saying.
Hu congratulated Obama on winning the presidential election in a telegram on Wednesday, promising to expand dialogue and cooperation with his incoming administration.
"In this new historical period, I expect to work together with you to strengthen dialogue and exchanges between our two nations to enhance mutual trust and cooperation and to bring the China-US constructive cooperative relationship to a new level ... so as to bring more benefit to the people of the two nations and the whole world," Hu said.
He said "long-term, stable and healthy China-US relations" were in the two nations' interests and important for promoting "peace, stability and development."
A leading Chinese scholar said earlier Wednesday that China expects continuity but fears trade protectionism once Obama takes office.