Chi Wang: Re­la­tions should al­ways im­prove

China Daily (Canada) - - PEOPLE -

Since 1995, the USCPF has brought about 600 con­gres­sional chiefs of staff and other se­nior staff mem­bers, from of­fices of Repub­li­cans and Democrats, to visit China, ac­cord­ing to Wang.

The pro­gram aims to pro­vide the par­tic­i­pants with in­sight into the is­sues af­fect­ing mod­ern Chi­nese and to serve as an in­tro­duc­tion to China-US re­la­tions, es­pe­cially those staff mem­bers who have never been to China.

The most re­cent del­e­ga­tion was com­posed of 11 con­gres­sional chiefs of staff, leg­isla­tive di­rec­tors and se­nior staff. Six of the par­tic­i­pants work for sen­a­tors and five work for US rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

They vis­ited Bei­jing, Shenyang, Dan­dong and Harbin from Aug 22 to Sept 1.

“They were very in­ter­ested to know more about the north­east­ern part of China,” Wang said.

Wang be­lieves more in­ter­ac­tions be­tween the pol­i­cy­mak­ers from the two coun­tries would ben­e­fit both sides pro­foundly.

“I hope when the Chi­nese of­fi­cials visit the US, they are more ac­tive to meet and talk to mem­bers of the Congress, not just of­fi­cially; a pri­vate meet­ing would work bet­ter some­times,” Wang said. “This would greatly en­hance the un­der­stand­ing be­tween the two coun­tries and would ben­e­fit both sides.”

The USCPF also pro­duces “China Fo­rum”, an ed­u­ca­tional TV show on MHz World­view on Sunday morn­ings. Each pro­gram dis­cusses con­tem­po­rary is­sues re­lat­ing to China, fea­tur­ing a di­verse panel of ex­perts.

In­stead of ad­vo­cat­ing any spe­cific poli­cies to­ward China, the pro­gram aims to ad­vance Amer­i­can un­der­stand­ing and aware­ness of the in­creas­ingly nu­anced re­la­tion­ship.

The up­com­ing 21st an­niver­sary of the USCPF has led Wang to think about new is­sues, such as how to open a new chap­ter for the foun­da­tion.

Wang said his life has al­ways been pro­foundly in­flu­enced by the re­la­tions be­tween China and the US.

When he came from China to the US in 1949, he pur­sued un­der­grad­u­ate stud­ies in agri­cul­tural sci­ence at the Univer­sity of Mary­land be­cause his fa­ther, Wang Shu-chang, who was gover­nor of China’s He­bei prov­ince and a room­mate of Chi­ang Kaishek while study­ing in cadet school in Ja­pan, sug­gested that agri­cul­ture is very im­por­tant to China, and he should bring back the ad­vanced agri­cul­tural sci­ence and tech­nolo­gies to de­velop China’s agri­cul­ture.

How­ever, soon af­ter Wang ar­rived in the US, the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China was founded and Wang was not able to go back to his home coun­try un­til 1972.

“Now there are about 300,000 Chi­nese stu­dents study­ing in the US,” Wang said. “How­ever, there were only about 2,000 when I first vis­ited. Though that was quite a small group, ev­ery one of us be­lieves we car­ried a mis­sion for our home coun­try, China.”

Wang is hope­ful about the fu­ture.

“I hope the next gen­er­a­tion of the lead­er­ship of the foun­da­tion should be able to shoul­der the re­spon­si­bil­i­ties to pro­mote China-US re­la­tions,” Wang said. “I hope the Chi­nese gov­ern­ment will pro­vide more sup­port to us. Moral sup­port is im­por­tant to us,” Wang said. “I do hope the Chi­nese en­ter­prises will pro­vide more sup­port to us. As a non­profit, we re­ally don’t need much. But the sup­port from Chi­nese en­ter­prise can show a re­spon­si­bil­ity and in­volve­ment.

“We are go­ing to launch a sur­vey of the Congress next year af­ter the new mem­bers are sworn in. The sur­vey will in­ves­ti­gate how they think about China-US re­la­tions,” Wang said. “I hope there are more chan­nels for the both sides to com­mu­ni­cate. [The foun­da­tion] be­ing one of the most im­por­tant ones in the past 21 years, I hope we can do more in the fu­ture.”

DONG LESHUO / CHINA DAILY

Chi Wang, pres­i­dent and chair­man of the US-China Pol­icy Foun­da­tion, hold­ing his new book, 70Year­sofWit­nes­sandMe­mory:MyEx­pe­ri­en­ceinUS-Chi­naDi­plo­macy, at his home in Vir­ginia on Sept 28.

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