Congress members Rick Larsen (D–WA) and Darin LaHood (R–IL) are co-chairs of the U.S.–China Working Group (USCWG) and led a bipartisan congressional delegation trip to China over the last week. The six-member delegation traveled to Hong Kong, Beijing, and Hangzhou to engage with high-level Chinese and U.S. officials, as well as American businesses operating in China.
“I created the U.S.-China Working Group to provide members an opportunity to learn more about and discuss issues regarding China and the U.S.–China relationship,” said Larsen. “As a representative from Washington state, I am particularly concerned with the current trade discussions because the largest number of exports from the state go to China. Forty percent of jobs in the state depend on trade. In Snohomish County, where I was born and raised, 60 percent of all jobs are tied to trade.”
During the first stop in Hong Kong, the delegation met with Hong Kong Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau, U.S. Consul General Kurt Tong, and the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong to discuss the current business climate for American businesses operating in Hong Kong and ongoing commercial exchanges.
In addition, the delegation met with Carrie Lam, the Chief Executive of Hong Kong, who is the most senior elected official in Hong Kong, as well as numerous members of the Legislature in Hong Kong.
In Hangzhou, the delegation met with executives at Walt Disney, Boeing, Changan Ford Motor Company, and Wanxiang Group to hear about challenges facing American firms doing business in China. The group also toured the Alibaba headquarters.
The delegation also met with U.S. Ambassador to China Terry Branstad and the American Chamber of Commerce China to discuss the business climate in China and ongoing trade negotiations between the two countries.