New Journalist Exchange Focuses on China’s Growing Clout

L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (center, left) with participants in the EWC’s China-U.S. Journalists Exchange program discussing Chinese investment in Los Angeles.

The East-West Center’s first China-United States Journalists Exchange focused on China’s more assertive role in regional issues and its increasing economic might.

The program took seven senior Chinese journalists to Washington, D.C. Discussions and debates focused on the Chinese currency exchange rate and on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s comments that peaceful resolution of South China Sea disputes was in the U.S. national interest, drawing Chinese protest that the United States was interfering in regional issues. A survey by The Pew Global Attitudes Project on “ How Americans View China ” in which a 39 percent favorable rating in 2008 rose to 49 percent in 2010, particularly interested the Chinese journalists. A visit to Los Angeles included discussions with Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa about his efforts to attract Chinese investment to his city.

Meanwhile seven U.S. journalists saw China’s economic prowess firsthand in visits to Baidu, the leading Chinese-language Internet search engine; and Foton Motors, China’s largest commercial vehicle manufacturer. Meetings on Hong Kong’s economic recovery included Financial Secretary John Tsang. In Chengdu journalists met with victims of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake and visited the Giant Panda Protection Zone.

Click here to read stories filed by seminar participants.

This article is featured in the recent issue of East-West MediaLine, an online resource for media professionals, produced by the Asia Pacific Center for Journalists at the East-West Center.


Posted January 14, 2011