China, US to resume investment talks

Updated: 2012-04-28 15:19

By Hu Yuanyuan (

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BEIJING - China and the US will kick off the seventh round of talks on the bilateral investment treaty (BIT) very soon, Vice Minister of Finance Zhu Guangyao told a press briefing on Saturday.

"The two countries will announce the resumption of the negotiations of BIT at the technical-level in the upcoming fourth round of China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue (SED)," Zhu said, adding the two countries attach great importance to the resumption of the negotiations.

He said the negotiations were suspended due to the US side's internal assessment of the text. The American internal consultations and review of the text have finished, according to the US side.

"The Chinese side is glad that the negotiations will resume on the sidelines of the fourth round of the SED," Zhu said.

The vice minister added China welcomes the two countries to promote the negotiations on the principle settled upon by two heads of state that the two countries will work toward a cooperative partnership featuring mutual respect and reciprocity.

"The resumption of the talks on BIT is a positive signal for the bilateral trade and investment, but the process will not be easy," said Zhang Yansheng, director of the Institute for International Economic Research under the National Development and Reform Commission.

"In this election year, how to minimize the political impact on the economic issues should be a major concern for the two sides during the imminent fourth round of SED," Zhang added.

China and the US will hold the fourth round of SED from May 3 to 4 in Beijing, when Vice Premier Wang Qishan and State Councilor Dai Bingguo will hold talks with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.

The talks, initiated in 2009, cover a long list of issues, including strategic concerns, the environment, human rights and trade issues.