Henry Paulson, the US Treasury Secretary, said free trade, competition and an open economy were at the top of his agenda as the fourth installment in a series of top-level discussions between China and America opened in Annapolis on Tuesday. Paulson noticeably did not lead with a call for faster renminbi appreciation, the Wall Street Journal reported. Rather, he said he wanted to talk about how "open and competitive financial markets, including currency markets" are a source of strength. Paulson also spoke of cooperation on energy the environment and countering "protectionist measures." A US official claimed on Monday that it was possible the two sides could hold talks on a bilateral investment treaty. Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan, leading negotiations for his country for the first time, stressed that China has made progress on exchange rate reform but that overhauling the system takes time.