The 2019 Growing Global “US-China: The Next 40 years” luncheon posed challenging questions to the attendees about what the future holds between the two nations’ commercial engagements. The event hosted 600 guests with business, civic and elected official backgrounds who received first-hand perspectives from the Growing Global panelists: Consul General Zhao Jian, the 11th Consul General of the People’s Republic of China in Chicago, Jacob Parker, Senior Vice President at the US-China Business Council (who served as moderator), and Dave Rank, Senior Advisor at The Cohen Group.
Interim Chief Executive Officer of the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership, Rodney Crim, took part in welcoming attendees.
“The St. Louis Economic Development Partnership is proud to be the economic development team working to attract, retain and facilitate business growth in St. Louis City and County,” Crim said. “All of this is truly collective work – within the Partnership divisions and with many of the organizations here today.”
To start the panel discussion, Parker posed the issue of trade conflicts between the U.S. and China.
“What began as an issue of trade deficit raised by President Trump and the administration has evolved to cover a number of friction points in the relationship – market access, level playing field, IPR protection, and forced technology transfer,” Parker said. “Today, as the U.S. and China engage with each other to try and work through these very difficult issues, we’ve come to a point where we have some dates on the horizon where we can meet and discuss. But there is some uncertainty about how this will be resolved.”
Consul General Zhao agreed that the conflict exists but hopes it comes to a conclusion.
“We are very important trading partners to each other (The U.S. and China),” Consul General Zhao said. “This relationship has brought great benefits to our two peoples. They have benefited from close economic and cultural trade, and people-to-people links. The Chinese government attaches great importance to the relationship with the United States. We hope that there will be continued growth of this relationship in trade, economy, cooperation, casual and education exchanges, and people-to-people links because we know that it is in the interest of our two peoples.”