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U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and U.S. Commerce Secretary John Bryson to Convene 22nd Session of U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade in Chengdu, China

November 04, 2011

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and U.S. Secretary of Commerce John Bryson will co-chair the 22nd session of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) with Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan on November 20-21, in Chengdu, China. U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack will also take part in the discussions to address key agricultural trade concerns.

“The JCCT is a key venue for ensuring that our bilateral trade relationship moves in a positive direction to provide maximum benefits for American workers and businesses,” Kirk said. “Through this year’s JCCT, we are pressing China for concrete and measurable results on a number of significant issues including China’s policies on intellectual property rights, investment and innovation, as well as a range of sector-specific industrial policies.”

“The JCCT is an important opportunity to address and resolve key trade concerns with China,” Bryson said. “Our goals are to help open markets to U.S. exports that will improve the lives of the Chinese people, and to work to level the playing field for American companies. Our year-long work on these and other issues on the JCCT agenda will help spur economic growth here at home by increasing exports to China, and help us meet our National Export Initiative goal of doubling U.S. exports by the end of 2014.”

“Thanks to the productivity of America's farmers, ranchers and producers, our trading partners in China recognize the United States as a reliable supplier of the highest-quality food and agricultural products," Vilsack said. "Partnerships with a growing market like China are integral to the strength of the U.S. economy in the decades ahead. Under the Obama Administration, USDA has continued to expand markets for American goods abroad, worked aggressively to break down barriers to trade, and assisted U.S. businesses with the resources needed to reach consumers around the world.”

Established in 1983, the JCCT is the main forum for addressing bilateral trade issues and promoting commercial opportunities between the United States and China. The JCCT holds plenary meetings on an annual basis, while a number of JCCT working groups meet throughout the year in areas such as intellectual property rights, agriculture, pharmaceuticals and medical devices, information technology, tourism, environment and statistics.

Last year’s JCCT was held in Washington, D.C., and during the meetings China agreed, among other issues, to improve intellectual property rights enforcement, revise its indigenous innovation policies and to accelerate its accession to the WTO Government Procurement Agreement.

China was the largest supplier of U.S. goods imports in 2010 and was the third-largest market for U.S. exports in 2010 (after Canada and Mexico). U.S. goods exports to China were $92 billion in 2010, up 468 percent since 2000. Trade in services with China (exports and imports) totaled $31 billion in 2010; services exports were $21 billion and services imports were $10 billion.