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US business chief backs dialogue
( 2002-02-27 09:19 ) (1 )

Heightened dialogue between leaders of the United States and China will strengthen the overall US-China relationship, encouraging increased bilateral trade and investment, said on Tuesday chairman of the board of the US Chamber of Commerce (USCOC).

Steve Van Andel was speaking as experts reviewed the working visit to China of US President George W Bush.

Bush's visit coincided with the 30th anniversary of the Shanghai Communique and former US President Richard Nixon's visit to China in 1972.

Van Andel said the importance of the US-China bilateral relationship is now being given renewed prominence.

In 1972, Nixon accomplished an "ice-breaking" journey to China and realized the monumental meetings with then Chairman Mao Zedong and Premier Zhou Enlai, which "lifted a curtain that had separated the two countries."

"While differences remain, leaders of both countries have looked to common economic interests to strengthen the overall bilateral relationship," said Van Andel.

He also said: "Recent accomplishments, such as China's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and Beijing's successful bid for the 2008 Summer Olympics, are indicative of the progress achieved as a result of this relationship and China's emergence as a respected member of the international community."

He noted that in an increasingly complex world, a constructive US-China relationship will provide much needed support in facing the challenges that lie before the two countries.

Van Andel also stressed that opportunities for trade and development are reciprocal to both countries and key to the world economy.

"I chose China to be the first destination as soon as I chair the USCOC. In the coming months, I shall lead a delegation of several small and medium-sized companies to China to explore commercial opportunities," he said.



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