US Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez arrived in Beijing on Thursday morning, his first visit to China since taking office earlier this year.
Senior Chinese officials, including Vice Premier Wu Yi and Commerce Minister Bo Xilai will meet with Gutierrez with him during his three-day stay. US Trade Representative Rob Portman is also scheduled to meet with Wu on Saturday.
Economic and trade ties between China and the United States have become increasingly tense in recent months due to US restrictions on Chinese textile exports, and pressure on the Chinese government to revalue its currency.
Local analysts expect this visit to help cool down Sino-US textile trade frictions.
"Although the parties appear to be taking a tough stance with each other, the trade dispute is far from a trade war," said Zhang Hanlin, director of the Research Institute on the World Trade Organization with China's University of International Business and Economics.
(Xinhua News Agency June 2, 2005)