WASHINGTON - U.S. Trade Representative Robert B. Zoellick issued the following statement this evening after the House of Representatives voted down an effort to block the extension of normal trade relations for China:
"Expanding trade is an important part of President Bush's economic plan for American prosperity.
"Today's vote to continue normal trade relations with China is a bipartisan victory for America's entrepreneurs, farmers, workers, manufacturers and services firms.
"The vote parallels our intensified work to bring China and Taiwan into the WTO this year. Once China joins the WTO, the annual review of normal trade relations will be discontinued, pursuant to the PNTR legislation Congress passed last year.
"I applaud the efforts of the Republican and Democratic Members who voted to continue trade with China, and particularly the leadership of Chairman Thomas and Congressman Rangel."