U.S. governor expects job opportunities from U.S.-China Governors Forum

16:13, July 15, 2011      

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A U.S. governor said Thursday he hoped to create more jobs and investment for his state by attending the upcoming first U.S.-China Governors Forum.

Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley said in an interview with Xinhua that job creation was the reason behind his recent visit to China, which yielded more than 85 million U.S. dollars in Foreign Direct Investment.

"That was the reason why I've opened more offices rather than fewer all around the world to take advantage of this new global economy, so we can harness them for job creation at home," said O'Malley, who, together with over 30 U.S. governors, was attending the annual conference of the National Governors Association (NGA) here.

The governors will welcome several provincial-level Chinese officials Friday for the first ever U.S.-China Governors Forum scheduled here.

The officials include Zhao Hongzhu, secretary of the Communist Party of China Zhejiang Provincial Committee in eastern China, Wang Sanyun, governor of Anhui province in central China, Qin Guangrong, governor of Yunnan Province in southwest China, and Luo Huining, governor of Qinghai Province in northwest China.

This week, U.S. President Barack Obama and Congressional Republicans have been negotiating in Washington to raise the federal debt ceiling in exchange for cutting the deficit, but to no avail so far.

"Often times as we look from outside of Washington, there seems to be a debate between spending and revenues, a debate between raising the debt ceiling or cutting spending," O'Malley said.

However, "the real creative work we need to do in terms of public policy has to be around the jobs agenda; no modern economy can retire a deficit with 10 percent of unemployment," he said.

"Modern economy requires modern investments, if that economy is to create jobs. We witnessed that in China," O'Malley said.

He expressed hope that Chinese and U.S. governors will forge meaningful and tangible relations at the forum.

"There are a lot of opportunities out there. But we have to go out and engage with our neighbors in forging these opportunities," he said.

According to organizers, the Governors Forum aims to enhance sub-national cooperation between China and the United States to promote mutual prosperity.

Participants will discuss ways to boost trade, investment, exchanges in new sources of energy, environment-protection cooperation and education exchanges.

The NGA is expected to take some U.S. governors to China in the second half of this year.

"It's very difficult or impossible to be an effective governor in any American state without allocating a certain portion of your time to forwarding international relationships, and international business relationships," O'Malley said. "In difficult economic times, that's when we need to reach out and become more engaged rather than less."

Source: Xinhua
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