Washington (CNN) -- Vice President Joe Biden will depart on August 16 for a trip to China, Mongolia and Japan that will include meetings with China's top leaders, the White House announced Thursday.
The trip to China is at the invitation of Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping as part of planned reciprocal visits by the two nations' top deputies announced earlier this year, the statement said. Xi is considered the likely successor to President Hu Jintao.
Biden will meet with Xi, Hu and Premier Wen Jiabao while in China, according to the statement. The vice president also will visit Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province in the southwest, and go to the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar to demonstrate U.S. support for democratic development there as well as growing diplomatic ties between the countries, the statement said.
In Japan, Biden will "express steadfast U.S. support for its close ally in the wake of the recent earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear emergency" and also thank U.S. civilian and military personnel who aided the disaster response, the statement added. Further details on the trip will be released later, it said.