“We believe that cultural exchange is one of the most effective vehicles to enhance the friendship between our two people and understand our respective cultures,” Vice Minister Zhao said during the signing ceremony. “Meridian International Center is a prestigious organization with a good reputation for bridging cultures.”
Meridian and the China International Culture Association will collaborate in developing and implementing programs ranging from the visual, performing, and culinary arts to related forums, lectures, and training courses.
These efforts will build on past initiatives that have helped to strengthen the relationship between the U.S. and China. Most recently, Meridian and the National Art Museum of China collaborated on the successful 2009 exhibition METROPOLIS NOW! A Selection of Chinese Contemporary Art. This presentation marked the 30th anniversary of official diplomatic relations between the U.S. and the People’s Republic of China and chronicled the impact of rapid urban growth and globalization in China through local artists’ perspectives.
Vice Minister Zhao’s delegation included Deputy Director Generals of the Bureau for External Cultural Relations at the Ministry of Culture, Ms. Li Hong and Mr. Shu Xiao, as well as the Board Chairman and President of the China Arts and Entertainment Group, Mr. Zhang Yu.
The group traveled to the United States in advance of the second-round discussions in the U.S.-China Consultation on People-to-People Exchange (CPE), scheduled for April 11th. CPE was launched by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Chinese State Councilor Liu Yandong last May. This initiative is designed to foster connections between people from the United States and China working in education, culture, sports, science and technology, and other fields by providing a high-level annual forum where government and private-sector representatives can discuss cooperative efforts.