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Vice Minister Jiang: Working Together to Create a New Chapter for China-US Trade and Economic Cooperation


Dear Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am very pleased to come to Washington in this beautiful autumn for the fourth meeting of the China-US High Technology and Strategic Trade Working Group. This is an important meeting before the upcoming 20th JCCT and will greatly promote high-tech trade between the two countries. Hereby, on behalf of MOFCOM,I would like to congratulate on the meeting and extend my sincere thanks to DOC, NAM and all the organizers for their hard efforts.

As Vice Minister of Commerce in charge of high-tech trade and export control, I am deeply aware of the significance of this job. Mutual trust is the key to and communication the basis for expanding high-tech trade between China and the US. With government officials and business representatives from both sides sitting down together, this meeting will play an important role in boosting mutual understanding and mutual trust between the Chinese and US governments and industries, ensuring the sound development of Sino-US high-tech trade, and benefiting the two peoples.

Now let me share with you my following observations.

First, on China-US economic and trade relationship

The year 2009 is very important and meaningful for China-US relationship. It is in this year that the two sides agreed on the new positioning of the relationship and were jointly committed to building a positive, cooperative and comprehensive China-US relationship in the 21st century. The two sides have witnessed frequent and fruitful exchanges of high-level official visits.

China-US economic and trade ties are an important foundation and component of the relationship. Since the two countries established diplomatic relationship 30 years ago, bilateral economic and trade relations have developed steadily and soundly thanks to the joint efforts of the two governments and business communities. According to Chinese figures, bilateral trade in goods reached US$ 333.7 billion in 2008, quadrupling that of 2001 with an average annual growth rate of 19.5%. The US export to China stood at US$ 81.5 billion, trebling that of 2001 with an average annual growth rate of 15.2%. The two countries are each other’s second largest trading partner. The US is the second largest export market of China and its sixth largest source of import, while China is the third largest export destination and the biggest import source of the US, and has been the fastest growing major export market of the US for 7 years in a row. The two countries have launched all-dimensional cooperation in areas of trade, investment, science and technology, energy and environment. The scale and scope of cooperation has been enlarged, and the cooperation is rich in contents and takes various forms. The two countries are strongly complementary in economy, closely linked and highly interdependent.

At this moment, we are experiencing a rarely seen financial crisis. With the world economy mired in the worst situation since the Great Depression of the last century, China is facing severe challenges in economic development, and China-US trade and economic cooperation has also been affected. As a responsible major country, China has taken a positive and responsible attitude in the crisis. It has decisively adopted a stimulus package and identified domestic demand expansion as the basic standing point of economic growth. In the first half of this year, fixed assets investment increased faster and consumption demand picked up steadily and rapidly. Industrial enterprises above designated size grew with each passing month, and banks enjoyed abundant liquidity. All those signs suggest that positive changes have taken place in the Chinese economy and the situation is better than expected. The steady development of China’s economy will provide other countries with more opportunities and jobs, and will help boost confidence in the world economy.

The Chinese side places great emphasis on China-US trade and economic cooperation. Last April, MOFCOM and relevant chambers of commerce and trade associations organized a series of promoting activities in 16 cities of 14 states in the US,attended by 197 entrepreneurs representing 84 companies from China. Those activities included over 60 economic and trade forums, signing of agreements on trade and investment projects and investment environment study tours. The signed trade and investment agreements involved a total value of US$ 18.34 billion. During the visit of Wu Bangguo, NPC Standing Committee Chairman, to the US early this month, 41 cooperation agreements were signed between Chinese and American companies with a total value of US$ 12.4 billion. That has fully testified to the unequivocal commitment of the Chinese government to opposing trade protectionism with real action and responding to the crisis with strengthened cooperation in the difficult situation.

Dear friends,

Cooperation is the only right choice for us to tackle the crisis in today’s world of in-depth globalization. Under whatever circumstances, both sides should treat and deal with China-US economic and trade ties from a strategic height and a long-term perspective. We should adhere to the guideline of “resolving disputes by cooperation and promoting development by cooperation”, identify and expand the convergence of interests, and seek the overall development of China-US trade and economic cooperation. (To be continued)

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