Survey finds optimism on China-US ties

By Chen Weihua in Washington | China Daily USA | Updated: 2017-04-07 11:58
Survey finds optimism on China-US ties

Chinese people have shown increasing optimism over the trajectory of their country's future and China-US relations, according to the initial findings of a survey by the Committee of 100 (C100) released on Thursday.

Of the Chinese respondents, 92 percent think China is headed on the right track. Compared to four years ago, there is also greater Chinese support for China's leaders to grow their international stature through diplomacy and take a global leadership role, according to the forthcoming C100 US-China Public Perceptions and Opinion Survey 2017.

The C100, founded in 1990, is a group of prominent Chinese Americans working to promote constructive relations between the Chinese and American peoples, with members like architect I.M. Pei, cellist Yo-Yo Ma and Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang.

The results were released on Thursday, just hours before Chinese President Xi Jinping's fi rst meeting with US President Donald Trump at the latter's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

"With more Chinese believing that the US-China relationship will improve (32 percent) rather than worsen (23 percent) under the Trump administration, today's first meeting comes with high expectations on both sides," survey report stated.

"This moment is the opportune time for both countries and their leaders to set the bilateral relationship on a hopeful and mutually benefi cial path," Frank H. Wu, chairman of C100, said in a press release.

The C100 survey also revealed that while each country had concerns about the other - with Americans most worried about the trade defi cit, loss of US jobs to China and cybersecurity; and the Chinese most concerned about the US military presence in the Asia-Pacifi c region and the issue of Taiwan - there were also areas of common concern on such issues as climate change and North Korea.

For the fi rst time, Americans and Chinese are in agreement about the main areas in which both countries would benefi t from working together:trade, global financial stability and the environment, according to the survey.

At this critical infl ection point in US-China relations, these areas of common interest between the two countries should invite expanded cooperation and creative collaboration at the highest levels, the C100 report said.

The Committee of 100 urges the leaders of both countries to seize this opportunity to focus on issues of mutual interest and exercise collective global leadership, according to the report.

The full survey report is expected to be released in May at the C100 annual conference in Washington.The survey this year was conducted among 3,696 Chinese respondents and 1,019 American respondents between November 18 and December 23, 2016.

Expectations for the fi rst Xi-Trump meeting are also high among the US business community.

In a statement on Wednesday,John Frisbie, president of the USChina Business Council, said this meeting is more about the relationship that will be established between the two leaders.

Early meeting may be more about tone than substance, Frisbie said the two leaders must fi nd enough common ground to want to put the relationship on a better path.

Oxford Economics estimates that trade with China supports 2.6 million US jobs. China contributes onethird of global growth every year now - more than the US.


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