|US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrived in Beijing on Friday evening for her first visit to China since taking office. While analysts agreed the visit was unlikely to result in any significant formal agreements, it is seen as an opportunity to lay foundations for closer relations, and to discuss ways to bail out the world economy.|
"I personally watched Hillary's presentation, body language, and responses as she described her expectations of a positive reception in China this week. I was genuinely convinced that Mrs. Clinton was sending a clear message to China before her trip that her private and confidential meetings in China with the President Hu and other key officials are critically important in ensuring a future of growing, improving, more positive, and more cooperative relations between the United States and China." Thus spoke William Harrison, President of Harvest Corporate Services and a senior advisor to the United States and China Foundation, a non-profit organization whose aim is to facilitate exchanges between the United States and China. Mr. Harrison is also a good friend of former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton.
"The Clintons and the Obama Administration have a clear understanding that we need peace, together with closer, more constructive, and more beneficial ties with China, including a mutual strengthening of reliance on law and ethical standards of behavior. We need China, and China needs the United States. We all understand and agree that a more closely-monitored expansion of our financial and marketing ties with China will be to our mutual benefit in working towards global peace, free and open trade, a stronger and better regulated exchange rate between the yuan and the United States Dollar, and increased employment in both nations," Mr. Harrison told China.org.cn.
Mr. Michael F. Bianco, Chairman & CEO of American Capital Markets Group, was of a similar opinion. "I am optimistic about the future Sino-US relationship as I believe the leaders of both nations face major problems in common which can best be solved by mutual cooperation rather than confrontation. China owns 50 percent of America's Treasury Bonds so it has a vested interest in the success of the USA economy. China also has huge exports to the USA market so it is in China's best interests to support this major market for its goods. Years of effort have been devoted to promoting cordial relationships, and these will be the basis for further expansion. Issues will arise from time to time in regard to human rights, currency valuation, USA military support for Taiwan etc, but while the Bush administration rather unwisely tended to act without discussion or consultation with other nations, by and large the Obama administration reaches out to work on a more friendly basis with foreign governments everywhere," added Mr. Bianco, who is also an senior advisor of United States and China Foundation.
When asked for their opinions on another of Mrs. Clinton's priorities, climate change, Mr. Harrison said: "In my opinion the environment is the key to future global prosperity. If they work together more closely, China, the United States, and India have the brain power to address issues like battery development, power grid research, and the technical development of electrical power from solar and wind sources."
China is the last leg of Hillary Clinton's four-nation Asian visit which started on February 15, beginning with Japan, Indonesia and the Republic of Korea (ROK). She is scheduled to return home from China on February 22.
(China.org.cn February 21, 2009)