New US envoy to China 'excited' to serve

By Wang Qingyun | China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-29 07:19

New US envoy to China 'excited' to serve

Terry Branstad, the new United States ambassador to China accompanied by members of his family, speaks to journalists at his official residence in Beijing on Wednesday. Zou Hong / China Daily

Terry Branstad, the new United States ambassador to China, said on Wednesday that he looks forward to forging stronger ties between the two countries, as well as helping to arrange US President Donald Trump's visit to China later this year.

"We have had a great relationship with the Chinese people," he said in a meeting with reporters at his official residence in Beijing. He said he looks forward to being an important emissary between President Xi Jinping and the Trump administration.

Branstad, whose appointment was confirmed in May, said: "I know President Trump intends to come over to China sometime later this year. And I want to play an important role in helping make those arrangements.

"We want to work on all those things that we can do together for the benefit of protecting and improving the well-being of the people in both of our countries, as well as the rest of the world."

With his family by his side at the podium, the ambassador said he was "excited" about China lifting its import ban on US beef after 13 years.

China approved selected imports of US beef earlier this month, marking a key stage in one of the "early harvests" of a 100-day plan agreed upon by the two countries.

The ambassador said US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue is coming to China for discussions on issues including working out the details for the sale of US beef.

China and the US - "the two greatest economic powers" - need to work together to deal with issues such as expanding trade and denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula, Branstad said.

The 71-year-old served more than 22 years as governor of Iowa.

In 1985, he hosted Xi, a county leader in China at the time, on Xi's first trip to the US. Branstad has visited China six times.

"During the time that I'm the ambassador, it's my goal to go to every province in China and meet people from all over this great country," he said.

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