NEW YORK, June 16, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- A high-level group of Chinese and American dignitaries and more than 30 scholars from leading think-tanks of both countries discussed an array of topics during a day of dialogue on Sino-American relations, including greater economic cooperation and the Belt and Road Initiative.
The "High-level Dialogue on US-China Economic Relations'', held on Wednesday at the New York-based Asia Society Policy Institute, was the first of its kind since Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump met in early April at Mar-a-Lago, Florida.
The one-day dialogue was jointly hosted by the Asia Society and the China Center for International Economic Exchanges.
Discussions focused on three topics: "US-China Economic Relations: New Common Ground for Cooperation", "the 100-Day Plan since Mar-a-Lago and Beyond" and "US-China Cooperation in Global Economic Governance".
Prominent keynote speakers included Kevin Rudd, president of the Asia Society Policy Institute; Michael Bloomberg, former New York City mayor; Tung Chee-hwa, vice-chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference; Zhao Qizheng, former minister of China's State Council Information Office; Cui Tiankai, Chinese ambassador to the US, and Wei Jianguo, former vice minister of commerce and vice-chairman of the board of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges.
The participants noted that US-China relations are moving toward a more stable, constructive and sustainable direction, and cited as examples the successful Xi-Trump meeting, initial achievements of the 100-Day Plan that were announced in May and participation of a US delegation in last month's Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing.
Economic and trade cooperation are the "ballast stone" for the development of bilateral relations, said the participants, who also agreed that the Chinese and US economies are highly complementary and that the 100-Day Plan can play a major, positive role in promoting US-China economic and trade relations, especially in rebalancing bilateral trade.
Noting that bilateral economic and trade relations are "at a critical stage," both sides urged their respective governments to act for early completion of negotiations on the US-China bilateral investment treaty (BIT), and to launch broader negotiations on a bilateral investment and trade treaty (BITT) to further expand cooperation in areas like high-tech products and services.
The participants had an open and candid exchange of views at the session, with the Chinese expressing concerns about what they believe is rigid US national security reviews on Chinese enterprises seeking to invest in the United States. Their American counterparts raised questions about the foreign investment environment in China.
The two sides also had in-depth discussions on how the US and China could conduct closer cooperation to address global challenges, and on global governance reforms aimed to introduce fairer and more just, rational and sustainable order and rules for the world.
The Chinese participants raised the ambitious US plan to upgrade the country's infrastructure, and conveyed Chinese companies' desire to participate, offering their extensive experience and great expertise in the building of high-speed railways, expressways, bridges and harbors.
The US side, meanwhile, showed much interest in getting more American businesses involved in the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative.
Addressing the role of think tanks, the participants from both sides said that they should improve communications and work together to provide sound policy advice for their respective governments to help reduce differences, expand cooperation and achieve win-win outcomes.
China's top think-tanks, including the CASS, the DRCSC and the CAMR, all sent scholars for the dialogue. Some Chinese business representatives and officials from the SCIO, the NDRC and the Ministry of Commerce also attended the event as observers.
On the sidelines of the event, the Chinese delegation presented the newly released "Building the Belt and Road: Concept, Practice and China's Contribution" report and "Research Report on U.S.-China Economic and Trade Relations," and also held a Q&A session with international media.
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SOURCE China Center for International Economic Exchanges