by Shaun Donnelly, USCIB’s vice president for investment and financial services
When Chinese President Xi Jinping visits Washington later this month for what may well be the final full-blown U.S.-China summit of the Obama administration, there will be a lot of important bilateral and global issues on the agenda – cyber security, South China Sea, democracy and human rights, climate change, Internet freedom, North Korea, Iran, Syria and a whole lot more. But I want to make a strong plea that the U.S. and Chinese governments also use this upcoming summit to push for real breakthroughs on the long-running U.S.-China negotiations on a bilateral Investment treaty – the “U.S.-China BIT.”
The U.S.-China BIT has the potential to be a win-win agreement to provide broad legal protections, market-opening and dispute settlement mechanisms for foreign direct investment (FDI) flows in both directions. China already has over 100 BITs with other nations, so current and potential U.S. investors are presently at a disadvantage in competing for investment opportunities in China’s fast-growing economy. And make no mistake, this is not a one-way street; Chinese investors are already investing, and looking to invest more, in the U.S., which we should welcome to help increase investment, jobs and economic growth here at home.