Hu delivered his remarks in Beijing at the opening session of an annual meeting on foreign policy and economic issues, Xinhua reported.
"To build a new type of relations between China and the United States, we need to trust each other," Hu said.
He said the two countries would have differences on some issues.
"We should approach our differences in a correct way, and respect and accommodate each other's interests and concerns," Hu said.
Through "creative thinking and concrete steps," Hu said, the United States and China could "prove that the traditional belief that big powers are bound to enter into confrontation and conflicts is wrong and seek new ways of developing relations between major countries in the era of economic globalization."
He also said the two countries should "nourish our friendship."
Hu did not mention human rights or blind activist Chen Guangcheng, who left the U.S. Embassy in Beijing after fleeing house arrest, then urged U.S. officials to help get him and his family to the United States.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged China Thursday to protect human rights, saying, "No nation can or should deny those rights."
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