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Xi, Trump see signing of $253b in deals

By An Baijie | China Daily Europe | Updated: 2017-11-12 15:24

Huge agreements send strong signal of trade boost between world's biggest economies

President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump witnessed the signing of 15 commercial documents worth $253.5 billion (218.5 billion euros; 193 billion) on Nov 9, which entrepreneurs say has sent a strong signal of boosting trade between the world's two largest economies.

The agreements and memorandums of understanding, signed at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, included the purchase of US-made chipsets and soybeans. Boeing and China Aviation Suppliers Holding signed an agreement for 300 airplanes.

 Xi, Trump see signing of $253b in deals

President Xi Jinping and his wife, Peng Liyuan, and US President Donald Trump and his wife, Melania Trump, pose for a photo in front of the Hall of Supreme Harmony during their visit to the Palace Museum, or the Forbidden City, in Beijing on Nov 8. Lan Hongguang / Xinhua

Companies from the two countries agreed to cooperate on a gas project in Alaska worth of $43 billion and a shale gas demonstration project valued at $83.7 billion.

After witnessing the signing ceremony, Xi said in a speech that there is huge potential for China-US economic and trade cooperation.

Noting that the Chinese and US economies are highly complementary, Xi said China is willing to expand imports of energy products including liquefied natural gas, crude oil and refined oil from the United States.

Xi called on the US to increase exports of civil technologies to China. The Chinese government encourages domestic companies to invest in the US, and US companies are also welcome to participate in building projects associated with the Belt and Road Initiative, he said.

"China will not close its doors and will open even wider," Xi said, adding that foreign companies would find China's market "more open, more transparent and more orderly".

The large population remains a bonus for China's economy, and Chinese market potential is great, he added.

The three major US automakers - General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler - produced and sold more than 5 million vehicles in China last year, which is more than their total sales in the rest of the world, not including the US market, Xi said, adding that Chinese investment has created more than 140,000 jobs in the US.

Noting that it's natural for the two countries to have trade friction, Xi called on the two sides to properly handle such issues with the principle of equality and mutual benefit.

China will firmly stick to reform and opening-up, deepen supply-side structural reform and put forward practical measures to boost opening-up, Xi pledged.

Prospects for the Chinese economy are bright, Xi said, adding that the country's economy has shifted from high-speed growth to high-quality growth.

Trump spoke highly of the contributions made by businesspeople to the economic cooperation between the two countries, saying that their discussion "provides a critical bridge" between the business communities of both sides.

Mentioning the current trade relationship between the US and China, Trump said that it's not China, but the former US administration, that should be blamed for the US trade deficit.

The US president also expressed gratitude for China's efforts on the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

Andrew Liveris, chairman and CEO of The Dow Chemical Co, said the signing ceremony attended by both presidents has sent "a very powerful signal" of boosting US-China trade.

Dow Chemical has signed an agreement with Chinese bike-sharing giant Mobike Technology to supply eco-friendly tires, he said.

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