Travel Log 3: Secretary Bryson Travels to Nanjing
With the Strategic and Economic Dialogue complete, Secretary Bryson traveled to Nanjing this weekend for meetings with Chinese provincial officials to discuss how the U.S. and China can continue to work together to strengthen the economic relationship between the two countries.Nanjing, in eastern China, is the capital of Jiangsu province. With a population of over 8 million, the city is an important cultural, educational and economic center, located a little over an hour from Shanghai.Secretary Bryson's weekend began with a meeting with Nanjing Municipal Party Secretary Yang Weize, where Secretary Yang spoke about the history and culture of the city that was one of the four ancient capitals of China. Secretary Yang also highlighted the city's commitment to innovation and education. Over 800,000 students study at colleges and universities in the city.Secretary Bryson expressed his thanks for the hospitality he has been shown in the city and his eagerness to learn more about the future of Nanjing, a city where imports from the United States are on the rise.The two also spoke about how Nanjing is set to host the Youth Olympics in 2014, the second time the games will be held.Secretary Bryson was then able to take in some of the local culture and history of the area with a visit to the Nanjing Presidential Palace. The Palace served as the executive offices and residence of successive presidents from the fall of the emperor in 1912 through 1949.Secretary Bryson also met with Jiangsu Provincial Party Secretary Luo Zhijun while in Nanjing. Secretary Bryson first met Secretary Luo during Chinese Vice President Xi's visit to Los Angeles this past February.The two continued the discussion they had started at that first meeting, touching on Chinese investment in the United States, the importance of strengthening intellectual property protection, and what can be done to expand American exports to the province.Making up 18 percent of the bilateral trade between China and the United States, Jiangsu Province has a strong economic relationship with the U.S. However, the province has a strong historical connection to the U.S. as well. After their meeting, Secretary Luo showed Secretary Bryson the former residence of the late U.S. Ambassador John L. Stuart, where he lived until 1949.On Sunday, Secretary Bryson met with Governor Li Xue Yong of Jiangsu Province, before boarding the high speed train to Shanghai. The governor pointed out that the high speed train was part of the government’s commitment to improving infrastructure in the province. Secretary Bryson and Governor Li both remarked on how personal relationships are critically important in building the long term economic relationship between the two countries. Today, Secretary Bryson finished his trip to China with meetings with business leaders, including from the travel and tourism industry in Shanghai.