Liu's U.S. visit designed to ease tensions

Updated 2018-02-27 08:38:01 China Daily

Experts say he'll use background in economics and trade to calm waters

Analysts say there are hopes a visit to the United States beginning Tuesday by a high-ranking Chinese official will ease trade tensions and maintain steady bilateral ties.

Liu He, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and director of the General Office of the Central Leading Group for Financial and Economic Affairs, will visit the U.S. through Saturday, the Foreign Ministry said.

The two sides will exchange views on China-U.S. ties and economic and trade cooperation, ministry spokesman Lu Kang said on Monday.

Liu put his background in economic policy research to work at the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, last month and spoke about China's economy, reform and opening-up.

Liu's U.S. trip comes roughly two weeks after State Councilor Yang Jiechi visited Washington, where his trip showcased successful high-level exchanges between the two nations, experts said.

Trade issues are expected to be a major agenda item for Liu. Officials from both sides have spoken in the past month about several U.S. trade cases targeting commodities from China.

Jin Canrong, a professor of international relations at Renmin University of China, warned that as the U.S. midterm elections in November near, both major U.S. political parties may pick more trade fights with China.

Wu Xinbo, director of the Center for American Studies at Fudan University in Shanghai, said Liu's visit shows Beijing's plan to boost contact with Washington in an effort to ease trade tensions.

Talks between Liu and major economic policymakers and advisers will be designed to discourage the Trump administration from initiating major trade issues, and Beijing and Washington have found a way to boost trust-chiefly by letting key government officials meet more often, Wu said.

Teng Jianqun, director of the Department for American Studies at the China Institute of International Studies, said Liu's visit will help reduce U.S. anxiety over China's policies when key financial and trade policy insiders of both sides meet, review differences and misunderstandings, resolve some and move forward.

Trade between the world's two largest economies exceeded 0 billion last year.

Liu's trip will help Washington to better know its great benefits from working with China. Further, the visit may help expand two-way cooperation in areas such as markets, technologies and top-quality international workers, Teng said.

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