Hu, Bush to meet on April 20 - US
Updated: 2006-03-23 08:41
WHEELING, W.Va. - US President George W. Bush will meet with Chinese
President Hu Jintao in Washington on April 20 to discuss issue of mutual
interest and to make progress on resolving outstanding differences, White House
spokesman Scott McClellan said on Wednesday.
"The visit is an opportunity
for the president to work with the Chinese leader on a number of areas of mutual
interest and to make progress on resolving outstanding differences," McClellan
told reporters traveling with Bush to West Virginia.
U.S. President George
W. Bush (R) greets China's President Hu Jintao (L) in New York September
13, 2005. Hu was in New York for the United Nations General Assembly
One key issue point
of contention is Washington's continuous demand for Beijing to move more quickly
to let its yuan currency trade freely in financial markets.
said the discussions on Hu's first U.S. trip as Chinese president would include
the full range of regional international issues, including Bush's war on
terrorism and nonproliferation questions.
Washington sees Beijing as a
key partner in halting the nuclear arms ambitions of North Korea, and needs the
help of China as a veto-wielding permanent member of the U.N. Security Council
to rein in Iran's suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons.
rescheduled after a planned trip last September was postponed because of
Hurricane Katrina, comes as some U.S. senators threaten China with sanctions
unless it revalues the yuan.
Sen. Charles Schumer, a New York Democrat,
and Sen. Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican, have introduced
legislation that threatens China with a 27.5 percent tariff on its exports to
the United States unless Beijing allows the yuan to strengthen significantly
against the dollar.
Many U.S. lawmakers and manufacturers believe the
yuan is undervalued, giving China's exports an unfair advantage that has cost
millions of American jobs and fueled a bilateral trade gap that hit a record
$202 billion last year.
Last July, China implemented a 2.1 percent
revaluation and shifted to a managed float of its currency. Schumer and Graham,
visiting China this week, have called for a greater commitment to floating the
The Bush administration opposes the Schumer-Graham bill, but
it could go to a vote by March 31.
Asked why the trip will not be billed
as a state visit, Frederick Jones, a spokesman for the White House National
Security Council, said, "Each visit to the White House is unique and follows
different substantive and social formats."
Hu is also expected to visit
Seattle, and Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut -- stops on his canceled
itinerary last year -- but officials there were unable to confirm the