Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

China Seems More Receptive to U.S. Concerns, Gore Says

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

China Seems More Receptive to U.S. Concerns, Gore Says

Article excerpt

After two days of intensive talks, Vice President Al Gore said that China was promising greater access to its markets and listening with a "more receptive" ear to U.S. complaints about its human rights record.

Gore called a meeting Wednesday with Chinese President Jiang Zemin and earlier talks with Premier Li Peng "productive, friendly, searching" and said they had elevated U.S.-China relations to a new level of trust.

Gore offered no specifics, however, and U.S. leaders have heard such promises before. They often have come away convinced that they had won Chinese concessions, only to complain later that China was not keeping its end of the deal. Trade has been a perennially prickly issue in the U.S.-China relationship. The U.S. trade deficit with China totaled almost $40 billion last year. While the Chinese dispute the U.S. accounting formula, there was no dispute that the problem is growing. Gore said that Jiang and Li indicated that they were prepared "to take further steps to open the Chinese markets to U.S. goods and services." Jiang said of the highest-level U.S. visit to China since the Tiananmen crackdown in June 1989: "The past few days have been productive." "Good afternoon," he said in English as they started their talks with an energetic handshake. Gore said at a news conference, "I think we have done some good work here on behalf of the United States and on behalf of the relationship between the United States and China." Gore was heading today to Xian and Shanghai and then ending a weeklong trip to Asia by updating South Korean leaders on his talks with China. Gore said his visit to China would help pave the way for an exchange of state visits, with Jiang scheduled to travel to Washington in the fall. President Bill Clinton is expected to visit China next year. …

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