A Chinese business delegation signed agreements worth US$1.8 billion to buy just over 3 million tons of soybeans from the US, helping to strengthen agricultural trade ties between the two nations, Reuters reported. Led by Wang Chao, China’s vice minister of commerce, the group was part of Chinese President Hu Jintao’s state visit to the US. Ten deals were made with US grain companies like Cargill, Archer Daniels Midland (ADM.NYSE), Bunge (BG.NYSE) and international suppliers like Louis Dreyfus. Grain traders said the soybeans were likely for delivery in the September 2011 to August 2012 marketing year. More soybean purchase agreements are expected to be signed on Friday in Chicago. China is the world’s largest soybean importer while the US is the top exporter.