AUGUSTA, United States, Jan. 5 (Xinhua) -- New Chinese Consul General in New York Ping Huang has visited the northeasternmost U.S. state of Maine to promote China-U.S. ties by tapping regional cooperation potential between the two countries.
Huang met with Troy Jackson, President of the Maine Senate and Matthew Dunlap, Secretary of State of Maine, in the state's capital city of Augusta on Thursday after attending the inauguration ceremony of Maine's new and first-ever female governor, Janet Mills, Wednesday.
The 55-year-old Huang, former Chinese ambassador to Zimbabwe, said during the meetings that he believes regional cooperation is an important and dynamic part of China-U.S. relations, and the Chinese Consulate General in New York will continue to be dedicated to promoting mutually cooperative ties through boosting sub-national cooperation between the two countries.
Maine is among the 10 states in eastern parts of the United States for which the Chinese Consulate General in New York provides consular services. The other nine are Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Rhode Island.
These states "have a sound foundation to further deepen exchange and cooperation with China," thus contributing to the healthy and steady development of bilateral ties, Huang said.
Jackson said Maine attaches great importance to further expand cooperation with China and that he is committed to promote the exchanges of the state legislature and its Chinese counterparts.
Dunlap, who just returned from his first visit to China, said he was very much impressed by the development achievements China has made in the past decades and the potential for Maine's cooperation with China is huge.
Maine's trading relationship with China has seen great increase in the past 10 years, much of which has been fueled by China's growing import of Maine lobsters, a surge of Chinese direct investment and Chinese students studying in Maine, he said.
According to data from Maine International Trade Center's 2017 annual report, 2,262 Maine companies exported 2.7 billion U.S. dollars in goods and services to 176 countries.
Exports to Asia totaled 769 million dollars, accounting for 29 percent of the total, and China, Japan and South Korea were the top three destinations for Maine exports in Asia.