Seventy-five California State Assembly members on Aug 30 cast a "Yes" vote to pass a bill in Sacramento, CA, to declare that the CA legislature actively supports continued coordination and collaboration between California and China.
Authored by assembly member Evan Low, AJR 44 reiterates the necessity and importance to "increase mutually beneficial economic opportunities and strengthen the substantial, bilateral relationship in the areas of people-to-people exchange, trade, climate change, education, tourism, technology, innovation, and green development" between California and China.
It also said the measure would "urge the President of the United States and the Congress of the United States to support actions that further strengthen economic links between the United States, including California, and China."
The Golden State remains one of the most important partners in the U.S. to China. There are approximately 2 million Chinese and Chinese Americans living in California; more than 20 daily flights between California and major cities in China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Xi'an, Chengdu, Wuhan, and Qingdao.
There are more than 20 pairs of sister cities between California and China, while both sides are actively committed to green development and have been playing positive roles in addressing climate change.
China is the fifth-largest source of tourists to America, with almost 1.5 million Chinese tourists visiting California in 2016. In 2013, California became the first state to establish trade promotion agreements with individual Chinese provinces.
The Chinese government attaches great importance to friendly and cooperative relations with California, said the bill. In 2017 alone, China invested $29.4 billion in the U.S., about $4.7 billion of which was invested in California.
The bill also said that California does more business with China than any other state. Total trade volume between California and China was $175.6 billion last year, accounting for 27.6 percent of the total U.S.-China trade volume.
In addition, California's exports to China amounted to $16.43 billion in 2017, accounting for 12.6 percent of the total U.S. exports to China. California imported $159.1 billion worth of goods and services from China last year, accounting for approximately 36.1 percent of the U.S. total imports from China.
"The passage of the bill indicates that California policymakers are taking serious efforts to restore the China-U.S. relationship back onto the right track," said Ren Faqiang, deputy consul-general at the Chinese Consulate General in San Francisco. "Numbers cited in the bill are solid facts."