China's President Xi Jinping has called for unity among Asian countries through economic and cultural exchange amid his country's trade dispute with the United States.
Xi was speaking at the opening ceremony of the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations in Beijing on Wednesday.
Government, cultural and educational representatives from more than 40 mostly Asian countries are taking part in the event hosted by China's government.
Xi said the people of Asia expect the region to prosper. He proposed promoting exchange in literature, film and other cultural fields, and economic exchange in areas such as infrastructure building and trade.
He called for mutual respect and exchange on an equal basis, saying it is foolish to believe one's civilization is superior to others and to try to reshape others.
Xi did not directly refer to the ongoing trade dispute with the administration of US President Donald Trump.
But observers see Xi's repeated emphasis on mutual respect and equal treatment as indicating a sense of rivalry with the Trump administration, which has been increasing pressure on China.