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Interview: China and U.S. relations will continue to improve

The Honorable Elaine L. Chao

(Global Post) – “China and U.S. relations will continue to improve. There’s no other choice,” said Elaine Chao, the former U.S. Secretary of Labor, in a recent interview with Xinhua.

“The U.S. and China are the two largest countries, they must get along,” said Chao, who served as the Secretary of Labor under President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2009.

Born to a Chinese American family, Chao was active in promoting bilateral relations.

“It is very important for the President of China to come to the United States as it is important for the President of the United States to go to China to show top level communications and interests in getting to know one another,” Chao said. “A lot of time there are cultural differences. Americans do not understand what the Chinese are saying. So it is only through repeated visits and greater communications that there will be better understanding and more harmony between countries.”

Trust is critical between different countries and peoples, she said, adding that “Having a top level leaders’ conference such as the one we just had with the President of China and the President of the U.S., that is good toward fostering greater trust and mutual believe.”

To enhance U.S.-China relations, Chao emphasized public diplomacy and increased interactions between both countries.

“There are more and more students coming to the U. S. from China. There are many more American students going to China. Vice Premier Liu Yandong has embarked upon a strong program to have one hundred thousand scholars exchange,” she said. “And we are beginning to see a great numbers of Chinese tourists. We welcome them. It is also good for Americans to go to China, tour China, to understand several thousand years old Chinese history. Americans can learn from that, understand Chinese thinking, philosophy and culture.”

“Through public diplomacy, through tourism, through student and cultural exchanges, all of these are very helpful for the U.S. and China better understand each other and construct a mutual beneficial relations,” she said.

“Having a face of Chinese and learned from my father and mother who devoted in improving the bilateral relations,” said Elaine Chao, “I surely hope people from both countries can benefit from a better relationship between China and the U.S..”

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