Dec. 15 marked the end of the 21st session of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) in Washington, D.C.

The JCCT was co-chaired by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk along with Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Qishan. U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack also participated in the discussions. The outcome will make U.S. businesses more competitive in China, help boost U.S. exports and jobs, and increase market access for U.S. businesses, creators, innovators, entrepreneurs, farmers and ranchers seeking to do business in China.

Specifically, China agreed to significant initiatives in several areas, including intellectual property rights enforcement, open and neutral technology standards, clean energy, and government procurement. Importantly, on indigenous innovation, China agreed not to discriminate in government procurement based on the origin of intellectual property or to use discriminatory criteria to select industrial equipment. China also agreed to resume talks on beef market access.  

“The 21st JCCT was both productive and effective,” said Secretary Locke. “We were able to make progress on significant issues in a number of areas, and on other issues we have established channels that will allow us to continue our robust engagement and pursue timely solutions.”  

“China agreed to a series of intellectual property rights commitments that will protect American jobs.  The commitments build on China’s recently announced Special Campaign against counterfeiting and piracy,” Ambassador Kirk said.  “These commitments will have systemic consequences for the protection of U.S. innovation and creativity in China. We expect to see concrete and measurable results, including increased purchase and use of legal software, steps to eradicate the piracy of electronic journals, more effective rules for addressing Internet piracy, and a crack down on landlords who rent space to counterfeiters in China.”