Chinese Presidential visit may lead to improved relations between the U.S. and China

January 12, 2011

Produced by Worldview

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(Getty/Feng Li)
Chinese President Hu Jintao's state visit will be the first since 1997.

Chinese President Hu Jintao is set to travel to the U.S. next week for the first state visit by a Chinese president since 1997. It’s been called by some the most important visit by a Chinese official in the past 30 years.

Earlier this week in China, President Hu met with U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates to discuss military relations. If successful, Hu’s visit to Washington could set an agenda for U.S.-China relations for years to come.

Douglas Paal is vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He served as director of Asian affairs on the National Security Council under President Reagan. Paal likes the idea of a U.S.-China summit because he says it’s an “action forcing event.”