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Q&A: What does the Chinese dream mean for Sino-US economic ties? And are Chinese companies treated fairly in the US?
Editor's note: The author, Zhenyu Li, is a contributing columnist for some of the world's premier publications and editor-in-chief of the business channel at the People's Daily Online, a publication of China's Communist Party.
BEIJING, China — For the world's most important bilateral economic relationships — the China-US economic relationships, the year 2013 was an unusual one. Dialogues, exchanges and cooperation have been strengthened between the world's top two economies since China's smooth leadership transition and the start of US President Barack Obama's second term. The reform initiatives proposed at China's recently concluded Third Plenum will also create more opportunities for broader win-win economic cooperation between the two highly complementary economies. The China-US economic relationships are poised to grow to new heights.
China and the United States recently concluded their first Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) since the new Chinese and US administrations took office, agreeing to remove some trade barriers and build a foundation for the new model of major power relations.
As the China-US economic ties deepen, what will emerge as the new possibilities for the bilateral economic cooperation between China and the United States? How should we see the growing Chinese investment in the US? Is it a threat or a boon to the US economy?
As undersecretary for international trade at the US Department of Commerce, Francisco Sánchez is one of the few elites who can provide the most authoritative answers to these questions.
Sánchez heads up the US International Trade Administration (ITA), which addresses market access and compliance issues, and has led international trade missions to China many times.
He recently had an in-depth conversation with Zhenyu Li, a contributing columnist for some of the world's premier publications and editor-in-chief of the business channel at the People's Daily Online in China, a publication of China's Communist Party.
They talked about China's hotly-discussed new catchphrase — the Chinese Dream, the ever-growing China-US commercial ties and the expanding Chinese investment in the United States.
Here are excerpts from their conversation, edited and condensed by GlobalPost.
Zhenyu Li: As a US senior official, you must have noticed that Chinese President Xi Jinping has put forward a new catchphrase — the Chinese Dream, which can be viewed as China's new guiding spirit or concept. So, what's your interpretation of the Chinese Dream?
Undersecretary Francisco Sánchez: I think that President Xi wants the people of China to prosper and to live in a country with opportunity.
And so I think that he is focused on making reforms that will help continue stable economic growth. And I believe that part of that is fully integrating into the world economic community, encouraging more investment, and as you encourage more investment, it also encourages Chinese companies to invest around the world.
Zhenyu Li: So how do you think the so-call Chinese Dream will affect the US economy and China-US economic ties?
Sánchez: I think as my president, President Obama, has said that it is in the United States' interest for a strong and prosperous China, and we support that effort. As China grows, we can participate in that growth, and we can help by company investment. And we also want to encourage Chinese investment in our country.
Zhenyu Li: When talking about the Chinese Dream with the Americans, the first thing that pops up in their minds is often the well-known American Dream, which is more widely understood. So, what's your interpretation of the Chinese dream and the American dream? Care to make a comparison of the two dreams?
Sánchez: That's an interesting comparison. I think the goals and aspirations of what's been known as the American Dream is an interesting one. Certainly the American Dream has been characterized by opportunity and quality of life. And I think that President Xi aspires for similar goals to have a good quality of life and to make sure there is opportunity for personal growth and opportunity for economic growth.
Zhenyu Li: OK, let's move on to the questions about China-US economic ties, which is perhaps the world's most important bilateral economic relationships.
As you know, the China-US economic relationships have become more positive and constructive since the meetings between Chinese President Xi Jinping and his