China's preferred outcomes of the visit could involve its core national interests, including getting the United States to pledge to not sell arms to Taiwan and not mention Tibet's efforts to gain independence, said Ming, director of global affairs program and professor of government and politics at George Mason University in Virginia. Meanwhile, the U.S. might consider it a breakthrough if China agreed to raise the value of its currency, the yuan, to the U.S. dollar in order to level the playing field for the cost of goods.
But even though both countries could consider different outcomes the mark of a successful trip, the basic goal for both is to be more accommodating toward each other's concerns, Ming said.
View his interview with deputy senior producer of foreign affairs Daniel Sagalyn here:
-- By Larisa Epatko, Online NewsHour