Trumps Welcome Xi And Peng

By Zhao Huanxin and An Baijie in Florida | China Daily USA | Updated: 2017-04-07 11:58
Trumps Welcome Xi And Peng
The United States rolled out the red carpet for China on Thursday afternoon, as President Xi Jinping and first lady Peng Liyuan arrived at Palm Beach International Airport at 1:50 pm and were greeted by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and his wife.

Xi arrived here for the first meeting with US President Donald Trump. The heads of the world's two largest economies will conduct an extensive exchange of views on China-US relations and on world and regional issues of mutual concerns, according to Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang.

The Chinese delegation arrived at Mar-a-Lago in late afternoon, greeted by President Trump and the fi rst lady.

Following the welcome, the group shared some private time ahead of their dinner at 6:30 in the formal dining room.

Friday will be mostly spent in meetings, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said en route to Palm Beach Thursday afternoon.

The meeting had bolstered hopes for a smooth development of China-US political and economic interactions as China has become the fastest-growing export market outside North America for the US. The two nations'trade in commodities reached $519.6 billion last year.

Su Ge, president of the China Institute of International Studies,said the meeting will see the two leaders "make top-level designs for the ties between the two major countries", search for more common interests and chart a course for bilateral ties.

"Setting the direction will be paramount to both the China-US relationship and peace, stability and development in the Asia-Pacifi c region," Su said.

In anticipation of the Mara-Lago meeting, David Dollar,a senior fellow at the John L.Thornton China Center of the Brookings Institution, earlier said that instead of specifi c outcomes,the gathering will produce some general results on the economic and security sides, for example, about the two working together to try to reduce the imbalances and continually working to defuse tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

Su Xiaohui, a researcher on international strategy at the China Institute of International Studies, predicted that the Trump administration will not totally do away with bilateral communication channels established by the past US administration, and that it will also come up with new ways to stay in touch with the Chinese leadership.

"It is quite natural to see differing views exist between the countries. The key is to exercise eff ective control and management of them," Su added.

Hours before Xi arrived, at least 2,000 people, mostly of Chinese origin, lined the two sides of a road near the hotel in Palm Beach County, where the Chinese delegation is supposed to be staying during the two-day visit in Florida. They displayed the Chinese national flag and posters and played patriotic music and songs.

Qu Xianqin, president of the Florida branch of China Council for the Promotion of Peaceful National Reunifi cation, said the participants of the welcoming activities came from Orlando,Miami and even New York.

"This is our way to express our love of China which is becoming stronger," Qu said,adding that they prepared for the welcoming nearly half a month ago.

"I hope that with due wisdom,the two presidents will come up with a way to manage the disparities and diff erences between the two countries and push forward a winwin cooperation to benefit the Chinese and American people."

Claude Martel, who has lived in China for two years, said he joined the welcoming crowds early Thursday morning to"feel the bond that Chinese people have with their country".

"I've never worried about the relationship between China and the US," Martel said.

"I think the meeting (of President Xi and President Trump)will solidify their links and clarify things", since in the past they had had only phone calls, not direct in-person talks.

Zhang Yunbi in Beijing contributed to this story.


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