April 19, 2024

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U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, center, waits with others to receive Chinese President Xi Jinping at the San Francisco International Airport on Nov. 14, 2023, ahead of Xi’s meeting with U.S. President Joe Biden.

Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images

BEIJING — U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen was scheduled to arrive in China on Thursday ahead of four full days of meetings with Chinese officials.

It’s her second trip to the country since the summer, as the U.S. and China seek to increase high-level communication in an otherwise tense relationship. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is also due to visit China again later this year.

“I think our expectation is that we will at senior levels, and increasingly at all levels, continue to have ongoing and deepening dialogue. We went for too long with too little communication, and misunderstandings developed,” Yellen told reporters ahead of her arrival in China.

Her trip will cover the southern city of Guangzhou — the capital of China’s export-heavy province of Guangdong — and the national capital of Beijing, according to a press release.

Here’s her full itinerary of meetings:

  • Friday, April 5 — meet with Vice Premier He Lifeng, Guangdong Governor Wang Weizhong, economic experts and AmCham China business representatives
  • Saturday, April 6 — continue meetings with Vice Premier He Lifeng
  • Sunday, April 7 — meet with Premier Li Qiang, Finance Minister Lan Fo’an, Beijing mayor Yin Yong, leading Chinese economists and Peking University students and professors
  • Monday, April 8 — meet with former Vice Premier Liu He, People’s Bank of China Governor Pan Gongsheng

What will they talk about?

According to the Treasury, Yellen will discuss “unfair trade practices and underscoring the global economic consequences of Chinese industrial overcapacity.”

China has faced growing global scrutiny over how the country’s emphasis on building up its manufacturing capabilities, including the use of subsidies and policy support to do so, has helped Chinese companies to sell products such as solar panels at far lower prices than manufacturers in other countries.

In March, European Union Chamber of Commerce President Jens Eskelund said trade tensions between the EU and China will likely escalate as a result.

Here's what to expect from Secretary Yellen's upcoming visit to China

Guangdong is by far the top province in China by value of exports, according to Wind Information.

The province exported nearly 5.4 trillion yuan ($750 billion) in manufactured products last year, with equipment accounting for two thirds, according to Tu Gaokun, director of Guangdong’s industry and information technology department.

He told reporters last week the province was “committed” to improving productivity, and noted how it aimed to build up sectors such as new energy storage, biomanufacturing and commercial aviation.

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