The White House has invited Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping for state visits this year, and also hopes the leaders of South Korea and Indonesia can travel to Washington, President Barack Obama's top foreign policy adviser said.

"I'm pleased to announce today that we have invited Prime Minister (Shinzo) Abe of Japan and President Xi (Jinping) of China for state visits," National Security Adviser Susan Rice told an event Friday at the Brookings Institution think tank in Washington.

Rice did not elaborate further, but Tokyo and Washington are trying to arrange Abe's visit starting in late April or early May, according to sources familiar with the process.