A new group chaired by Jack Ma, of Alibaba, and Stephen Schwarzman, co-founder of Blackstone Group, called at its inaugural meeting for greater transparency and dialogue between the US and China, seeking to smooth and even boost trade ties between the world’s two largest economies. The inaugural US-China Business Leaders Summit ended its first meeting in Washington with a call “to create a more equitable and balanced bilateral and global economic environment.” That call came after a 2016 US presidential campaign that saw then-candidate Donald Trump espouse protectionist views, often critical of China. Since Trump’s election, relations have improved somewhat after a friendly summit in April between the leaders in Florida. Caixin reports that the Business Leaders Summit appeared to address some of Trump’s grievances by saying it was committed “to increasing bilateral trade, including the export of agricultural products, liquefied natural gas, and high-quality consumer products from the US to China, taking advantage of China’s economic transition.”
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