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Schwab and Gutierrez Travel to China for JCCT and Trade Talks

December 07, 2007



WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Trade Representative Susan C.
Schwab and U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez will travel to Beijing,
China next week for the U.S. – China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade
(JCCT) to be held Dec. 11. The JCCT, a high-level government-to-government
dialogue, seeks to open market opportunities and resolve trade disputes. U.S.
Department of Agriculture officials will also participate in the JCCT. Prior to
the JCCT on Monday Dec. 10 there will be a conference on innovation as well as
various public events and bilateral  meetings.

"The JCCT is a particularly important mechanism we have for tackling some of the inevitable challenges and differences of our large and complex bilateral trade relationship," said Ambassador Schwab.  "The American people recognize the benefits of our economic engagement with China but rightly seek more equity
and balance in our trade relationship.  The Bush Administration will
continue to work toward that goal whether through dialogue in fora such as the
JCCT or through resolute use of the other tools available to us.”

“American businesses, workers, farmers and ranchers are
exporting around the world at record rates,” said Gutierrez. “While
U.S. exports to
China, our second largest trading
partner, are growing at a rate of almost 17 percent in 2007, significant trade
barriers to the Chinese market remain. The JCCT provides an important
face-to-face platform to address concrete market access issues and strike down
these barriers to the fast-growing Chinese market.”

Commenced in 1983, this 18th plenary JCCT session will be
co-chaired on the U.S. side by USTR Schwab and Commerce
Secretary Gutierrez and on the Chinese side by Vice Premier Wu Yi. The JCCT, the
bilateral venue for the U.S. and China to address trade and market access
issues, has over a dozen working groups and sub-groups that meet throughout the
year to work on a range of trade and investment issues.  

Prior accomplishments of the JCCT include: China’s
agreement to preload legal operating system software on all computers produced
or imported into China, thereby addressing one aspect of business software
piracy and helping U.S. software manufacturers; a commitment by China to join
the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) Internet Treaties; and,
development of guidelines to promote bilateral technology trade that help U.S.
exporters while maintaining U.S. security.

Following the JCCT, Schwab and Gutierrez will join the
U.S. delegation to the
Strategic Economic Dialogue (SED) in Beijing, China led by Treasury Secretary Henry
M. Paulson, Jr. The SED is a forum designed to provide an overarching discussion
of ongoing bilateral economic issues, cross-cutting issues and long-term
strategic challenges.

The third Cabinet-level meeting of the SED will focus on
integrity of trade, balanced economic development, energy conservation,
financial sector reform, environmental sustainability, and advancing bilateral
investment. The dialogue was launched by President Bush and President Hu in
September 2006.

Secretary Gutierrez will deliver keynote remarks at the
U.S.-China Innovation Conference in Beijing on Dec. 10. The conference is an
outcome of the second SED and will focus on promotion rule of law, transparency
and competitiveness issues associated with innovation. The conference is
co-hosted by the Departments of Commerce and State, as well as Chinese Ministry
of Science and Technology.

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