News / Asia

US to Push Currency, Human Rights, at China Dialogue

An employee seals a stack of yuan banknotes at a branch of Industrial and Commercial Bank of China in Huaibei, Anhui province April 6, 2011
An employee seals a stack of yuan banknotes at a branch of Industrial and Commercial Bank of China in Huaibei, Anhui province April 6, 2011
TEXT SIZE - +

Obama administration officials said Thursday the U.S. side will press currency reforms and human rights, including specific cases, at the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue being held in Washington next week. The talks led by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Chinese State Councilor Dai Bingguo will include an array of cabinet-level officials from both sides.

It will be the third in a series of dialogues founded by President Barack Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao in 2009.

Although major economic and political issues still divide the two powers, U.S. officials say the candid give-and-take among senior leaders has narrowed differences and broadened contacts across both governments.

At a news briefing, the U.S. Treasury Department coordinator for the China dialogue, David Loevinger, said the United States has seen "promising shifts" in Chinese economic policy since the initial meeting, including a five per cent increase in the value of China’s currency, the remimbi.

U.S. officials have long pushed for an end to Chinese policies that they say have artificially suppressed the remimbi’s value and added to chronic trade surpluses with the United States, and Loevinger said further currency shifts are among U.S. priorities at next week’s talks.

"We are going to press China let its exchange rate adjust at a faster pace, to correct its still-substantial under-valuation," said Loevinger. "We’re going to press China on protecting intellectual property rights in China. We’re going to encourage China to move more quickly in lifting the ceiling on interest rates on bank deposits in order to put more money into Chinese consumers’ pockets."

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner will lead the U.S. side in economic talks joined by other senior figures including Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke, while Secretary Clinton will chair the political discussions.

Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Kurt Campbell said that dialogue will cover among other things North Korea, Sudan and  political upheaval in the Middle East.

He said the United States, as in all senior contacts with Beijing, will raise human rights issues including cases of specific individuals.

"We want to approach this critical matter from a principled and consistent approach," said Campbell. "You will see that in the President’s meetings, in the Secretary of State’s statements and all her meetings, we raise human rights issues, not just generally but specifically, specific cases. We ask our Chinese interlocutors for explanations about disappearances, about arrests, and legal procedures which we feel are either lacking or inappropriate."

Campbell said the sides will discuss counter-terrorism strategy in the wake of the killing by U.S. forces of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, and said the United States "very much appreciates" Chinese statements supporting U.S. actions againts bin Laden's compound in Pakistan.

He said the dialogue, spanning Monday and Tuesday, will for the first time include a range of military officials from both sides with the aim of avoiding "misunderstandings and miscalculations" in interaction by the two powers’ armed forces.

Related video report by William Ide:

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid