Sunday February 18, 2018

For nearly 20 years, the U.S.-China Policy Foundation (USCPF) has been organizing its Policymakers Educational Trip to China Program. This program arranges delegations for the senior staff of U.S. Members of Congress. These educational trips to China provide the participants with firsthand insight into the significant issues affecting modern China and the U.S.-China relationship. For most participants, this is their first time visiting China, so the trip is an especially valuable introduction to this important country.

The U.S.-China relationship is among the most significant bilateral relationships in the world. Unfortunately, there is still a high level of misunderstanding and mistrust between the two countries. Congressional staff have a unique opportunity to inform our nation’s legislators as they shape American policy toward China. The Policymakers Program enhances their understanding of the complex U.S.-China relationship and obtain the knowledge necessary to make informed policy recommendations during the course of their careers. Their interactions with Chinese officials, businesses, and organizations — both formally and informally — helps improve understanding and trust on the Chinese side as well.

Each delegation is comprised of a diverse, bipartisan delegation of senior staff from both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. The group is organized around a common interest or theme, such as shared membership in a key congressional committee. The cities, meetings, and sites visited during the trip are arranged to align with these shared interests, guaranteeing cohesive group that is able to fully engage during meetings and maximize their time in China. By selecting different committees for each trip, USCPF exposes a wider and more diverse range of congressional staff to China and the various issues affecting U.S.-China relations.

Some of the areas we’ve focused on over the years include infrastructure, development, trade, culture, education, and ethnic minorities. The participants meet with officials, visit schools, factories, and companies, engage with local communities, and experience a wide range of cultural sites and activities. Our groups have traveled to all corners of China, reaching from Xinjiang and Tibet all the way to Hong Kong and Harbin. USCPF  looks forward to continued our Policymakers Program and playing a role in increasing U.S.-China engagement, dialogue, and mutual understanding.

The educational trips to China are approved under Section 108A of the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961 (MECEA). For more information, please see MECEA 22 U.S.C. 2451 et seq.  USCPF works with the Chinese People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs (CPIFA) to plan our delegations. CPIFA has been fostering people-to-people relations by hosting foreign delegations to China since 1949.

 

If you are interested in participating in the USCPF’s future Policymakers programs, please contact the Foundation by phone at (202) 547-8615 or via email at uscpf@uscpf.org.

Links to additional Policymakers information:

Previous Policymaker Trips
Prior Program Participants by Year