Greetings from the White House. President Barack Obama hosted Chinese President Xi Jinping for his first US state visit.
This was the latest stop on the Chinese head of state’s trip to the US. The pomp and ceremony for the moment papered over the reported tensions between the two countries.
Alleged Chinese cyber spying, Beijing’s economic policies and territorial disputes with its neighbours were forgotten in the sunshine of an elaborate ceremony on the South Lawn.
Following the military guard the presidents will sit down to a lavish banquet followed by a summit. No significant policy breakthroughs are expected on the big issues that divide the two countries.
Arriving in Washington on the heels of Pope Francis the Chinese Communist leader can expect nothing like the wall-to-wall news coverage in the US.
But it’s expected there will be an agreement on climate change. China is the world’s biggest producer of greenhouse gases and the president is set to announce the start of a national “cap-and-trade” programme in 2017 to limit emissions.