Chinese leader speaks of equal footing with U.S. in dialogue

China and the U.S. must treat each other as equals in the new international framework, one top Chinese official said Monday, while picking up on some of President Obama's old campaign themes.

Chinese State Councilor Dai Bingguo spoke of "a spirit of mutual respect, treating each other as equals, mutual benefits" and progress during an opening statement at the two day Strategic and Economic Dialogue meetings in Washington this week.

Dai is the functionary equivalent of the U.S. secretary of State in the Chinese political structure.

"Today, China, the United States and other countries are all living in a smaller global village and we all face more and bigger global challenges that we cannot handle single-handedly," Dai said in a translated version of his speech.

But the Chinese councilor also picked up on some Americanisms, incorporating one of the president's trademark campaign slogans into his speech previewing the dialogue.

"Can we manage to do that?" Dai asked of the countries' abilities to address the challenges facing the U.S. and China.

"My answer is, we must work hard to make it happen," he said. "And, yes, we can. That is borrowed from President Obama: 'Yes, we can.'"