Former Chinese-American governor confirmed as U.S. commerce secretary
|www.chinaview.cn 2009-03-25 08:50:14|
WASHINGTON, March 24 (Xinhua) — Gary Locke, the first Chinese-American who ever led a U.S. state government, was confirmed by the Senate on Tuesday as commerce secretary.
Locke, 59, “will ensure American workers can prosper, our businesses can thrive and the economy can grow,” said Senate Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller.
Gary Locke, the first Chinese-American who ever led a U.S. state government, was confirmed by the Senate as commerce secretary on March 24, 2009. (Xinhua/Zhang Yan)
Senate Maria Cantwell also praised that Locke “will bring strong leadership to the Commerce Department and understands the challenges many Americans face as we work to stabilize our economy.”
Locke was elected to lead the Washington state in 1996 and re-elected in 2000. Prior to governorship, the Democrat served 5 terms in the House of Representatives and one term as executive of King County, Washington.
He was chairman of the House Appropriations Committee from 1989 to 1994.
Locke earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Yale University, and a law degree from Boston University. Analysts said he is a Democrat who “is a comfortable ideological fit with the Obama administration.”
He comes squarely out of the free-trade mindset of the mainstream business community in the northwestern United States and has a good relationship with China.
Former Chinese-American governor nominated as U.S. commerce secretary
WASHINGTON, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) — Gary Locke, the first Chinese-American who ever led a U.S. state government, was nominated by U.S. President Barack Obama on Wednesday as his third choice for Secretary of Commerce.
Announcing the nomination in a live-broadcast event at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building near the White House, the president said that the 59-year-old Locke has lived the American Dream and “shares my commitment to do whatever it takes to keep it alive in our time.” Full story
Editor: Deng Shasha
China Int’l Fashion Week kicks off
www.chinaview.cn 2009-03-24 20:04:43
Models present fashions during the China International Fashion Week (2009/2010 autumn/winter series) opened in Beijing, capital of China, March 24, 2009. (Xinhua/Chen Jianli)
The HRP-4C humanoid robot bows on the runway at the Shinmai Creator’s Project fashion show during Japan Fashion Week in Tokyo March 23, 2009. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
U.S. wrong to blame China for trade imbalance: Roach
|www.chinaview.cn 2009-03-24 15:45:01|
by Lu Hui
BEIJING, March 24 (Xinhuanet) — “The United States is making a mistake in holding China accountable for its large trade imbalance,” said Stephen Roach, Chairman of Morgan Stanley (Asia), on the sideline of China Development Forum in Beijing.
“This is the fact that the U.S. economy is in very serious difficulties,” Roach told Xinhuanet Monday.
“The United States is making a mistake in holding China accountable for its large trade imbalance,” said Stephen Roach, Chairman of Morgan Stanley (Asia), on the sideline of China Development Forum in Beijing.(Xinhua Photo)
“The United States is making a mistake in holding China accountable for the pressures that are very real that are increasing on American workers, this is not China’s fault,” Roach added.
When asked to comment on trade protectionism which is gaining ground amid the global financial crisis, he said, “We do have a large trade imbalance with China, but it’s because America doesn’t save, not because Chinese currency issues.”
“I have tried to say this for years to U.S. congress but they don’t understand that, if America saves more, we will reduce our current account and trade deficit with all nations, including China,” Roach added.
Earlier, Roach pointed out in a paper prepared for the forum that America’s excess consumption model is in serious trouble because the asset bubbles that have long supported it — property and credit — have both burst.
The paper added this is a U.S. problem and one that must be addressed at home with a new and disciplined approach to monetary policy, tough regulatory oversight, and more responsible behavior on the part of consumers and businesses, alike.
A bubble-dependent economy that lived beyond its means for a dozen years must now accept the reality of having to live within its means — and not holding others accountable for this painful yet necessary adjustment. The blame game is completely counter-productive in a world in crisis and recession.
On March 13, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said at a press conference upon the conclusion of the annual session of China’s top legislature that no country in the world has the right to put pressure on the devaluation or appreciation of the Chinese currency.
“The exchange rate of China’s currency, the yuan, should be decided by the country itself,” Wen said.
The premier reiterated the country’s target is to keep the exchange rate of the yuan “basically stable” at a reasonable and balanced level.
The U.S. has long held that China is “purposely keeping” its currency devalued against the dollar to help exports, which “injure the interests of U.S. enterprises.”
According to China customs statistics, Sino-U.S. trade hit 333.74 billion U.S. dollar mark last year, up 10.5 percent year on year.
China’s trade surplus with the U.S. increased 4.6 percent in 2008 from a year earlier to 170.85 billion U.S. dollars. The growth, however, was 8.6 percentage points lower than 2007.
In July 2005, China abandoned a decade-old peg to the U.S. dollar and allowed its currency to appreciate by 2.1 percent. Since then, the yuan has strengthened further, mostly slowly, and risen more than 20 percent against the dollar.
Sponsored by the Development Research Center under the State Council, or China’s cabinet, the China Development Forum was founded in 2000. It aims to support and promote policy consultation and academic research in China.
Officials, entrepreneurs, scholars and leaders from other nations, international and non-governmental organizations attended this year’s forum themed China’s Development and Reform in the Global Financial Turmoil.
Editor: Lu Hui
[And from a link on the above page – a button at the bottom of the page – ]
Chinese and foreign experts attend the opening session of the academic summit of China Development and Reform in the Global Economic Crisis of China Development Forum 2009 in Beijing, capital of China, Mar. 21, 2009. Over fifty leaders of multinational corporations, senior officials of international organizations and well-known scholars are invited to attend the 3-day forum this year which focus on the topic of China’s development and reform in the global financial crisis. (Xinhua/Gao Xueyu)
My note – it looks like this is where everybody has been this week.
MAJOR FOREIGN HOLDERS OF TREASURY SECURITIES
(in billions of dollars)
HOLDINGS 1/ AT END OF PERIOD
Jan 09 Dec 08 Nov 08
Grand Total 3072.2 3076.9 3036.6
China, Mainland 739.6 727.4 713.2
Japan 634.8 626.0 625.2
Oil Exporters 3/ 186.3 186.2 187.2
Carib Bnkng Ctrs 4/ 176.6 197.5 205.0
Brazil 133.5 127.0 136.1
United Kingdom 2/ 124.2 130.9 132.4
Russia 119.6 116.4 108.0
Top seven debt holders by country of US Treasuries / Debt –
(see chart at above link)