Monday Evening Town Hall on China Investment Is An Opportunity to Review Key Elements of Relationship

Monday Evening Town Hall on China Investment Is An Opportunity to Review Key Elements of Relationship

October 4, 2015

President Barack Obama welcomed President Xi of the People’s Republic of China to the White House in a Rose Garden event in which he marked the sixth meeting between the leaders saying, “As a result of our efforts, our two nations are working together more closely across a broader range of critical issues — and our cooperation is delivering results, for both our nations and the world.”

Obama’s first comments touched on the economic relations between the two powers, “Since I took office, American exports to China have nearly doubled and now support nearly one million American jobs. Chinese investment in the United States helps support jobs across our country.”

The visit of President Xi highlighted areas of cooperation between Washington and Beijing, notably on climate change and the P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran. Obama said, “So, greater prosperity and greater security — that’s what American and Chinese cooperation can deliver.” No news headlines mentioning China can go without attention to the areas of concern in relations such as cyber warfare and expansion in East Asia. Nevertheless the leaders gave significant attention to the economic component. In the Rose Garden Obama said:

First, with respect to our economic relationship, we agreed to step up our work toward a high-standard bilateral investment treaty that would help level the playing field for American companies. We’ve committed ourselves to a set of principles for trade in information technologies, including protection of innovation and intellectual property. President Xi discussed his commitment to accelerate market reforms, avoid devaluing China’s currency, and have China play a greater role in upholding the rules-based system that underpins the global economy — all of which are steps we very much support.

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President Obama welcomed President Xi of China at the White House on September 25th for consultations on a broad range of bilateral issues.

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This week the Tennessee World Affairs Council will host a Town Hall session taking up the question of China-US economic relations, specifically the prospects for foreign direct investment in the United States by China. The Town Hall will have two components: a webcast being presented across the country featuring a distinguished panel and an on-site presentation by Mr. Jeremy Goldkorn. The event is set for Monday evening at Belmont University.

The webcast, organized by the National Council on US-China Relations (NCUSCR), will start at 6 p.m., and will feature: Robert Rubin, Former US Treasury Secretary; Sheldon Day, Mayor, Thomasville, Alabama; Daniel Rosen, Founding Partner, Rhodium Group; and Moderator Stephen Orlins, President, National Committee on US-China Relations. The interactive panel will be seen in dozens of American cities and questions can be forwarded in advance (at www.ncuscr.org/cth) or in real-time via Twitter using #CTH15.

The national webcast panel will address recent growth in Chinese direct investment focusing on the recent “New Neighbors: Chinese Investment in the United States by Congressional District” report of the Rhodium Group and the NCUSCR. In its foreword it notes:

Since 2000, Chinese FDI has grown rapidly, reaching nearly $12 billion in 2014 alone. Chinese firms are engaged in areas as varied as construction, energy, entertainment, auto parts, chemicals, real estate, medical equipment, telecommunications and sportswear. Whether a new facility or the acquisition of an existing one, these local operations pay local, state, and federal taxes, provide jobs, push innovation, build trade linkages, and, in the process, touch and improve the lives of countless Americans. Just as we did 35 years ago, the Chinese and Americans involved in these investments are learning about each other, making contacts, and creating a new pillar for a more productive U.S.-China relationship.

The one hour webcast will be followed by Mr. Jeremy Goldkorn, Director of Danwei Research, who will be on-site, with remarks on “Business with China during Boom and Bust.” Mr. Goldkorn said he chose the title given the current negative view of the Chinese economy, “The pendulum has swung from starry-eyed, “the Chinese are going to take over,” to where there’s a prevailing sentiment that China is in a bad way.” He added, “I’d like to take on the notion that it’s either really booming or it’s really in trouble.” Mr. Goldkorn will also address the webcast focus on the NCUSCR/Rhodium Group report and the opportunities that foreign direct investment represent.

On top of an insightful conversation on trade and investment Mr. Goldkorn will expand the dialogue to include any aspect of the US-China relationship. He said, “Having just moved to Nashville after 20 years in China and just literally having gone back for an investor visit I’d like to encourage Q&A. If somebody wants to talk about politics I’m happy to talk about that too.”

The China Town Hall is hosted by the Belmont University Center for International Business in association with the International Business Council of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce.  The program was organized by the New York City-based National Committee on US-China Relations.

The event will open at 5 p.m. with check-in and a meet and greet. Remarks will begin at 5:45 p.m. followed by the one-hour webcast at 6 p.m. Mr. Goldkorn’s remarks will follow the webcast.

The China Town Hall is free and open to the public. The Tennessee World Affairs Council welcomes participants in its events to become members, as a way to sustain its global awareness education programs and resources.

Additional details on the speakers and the program are on the TN WAC web site at this link.

The TN WAC asks that you share this information with your friends and colleagues and encourage them to participate in its programs. A calendar of all TNWAC events is at this link.

The Tennessee World Affairs Council is a nonprofit (501c3), nonpartisan educational charity based in Nashville that works to build understanding of global issues in our communities. Learn more about the Council and find how you can join, donate and volunteer at: www.TNWAC.org  — Join / Donate / Volunteer

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