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Thursday, June 25, 1998 Published at 18:49 GMT 19:49 UK

World: Monitoring

The chinese media gave prominent coverage to President Clinton's visit
Chinese media welcome President Clinton

BBC Monitoring's Charis Dunn-Chan looks at Chinese media reports on the day US President Bill Clinton arrived in the northwestern Chinese city of Xian.

Chinese media reports on President Clinton's visit focused on the welcoming ceremony and good news on US-China business deals.

However, the clean streets and public order required of Xian for the welcome had to bought for a price.

Hong Kong's Ming Pao newspaper gave a behind-the-scenes report on the advance clean-up of the city saying that Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji sent in teams of undercover investigators to check out the preparations made by local officials.

The paper said that traffic was cleared up, pedicabs banned, roads cleaned, street traders banned and money distributed to the unemployed so that no street demonstrations would take place.

"What the local authorities worry the most about and what makes them the most nervous are that the kinds of incidents, in which people are begging for food, can occur during Clinton's stay in Xian," said Ming Pao, noting that pirate CD sellers were also ordered off the streets.

Focus on Business

[ image: Beijing's World Daily showing President Clinton in armour]
Beijing's World Daily showing President Clinton in armour
The official Chinese news agency, Xinhua, quoted the deputy trade minister Sun Zhenyu, as asking the USA to come to the "correct conclusion" in not delaying China's entry into the World Trade Organisation and describing as "unfair" the USA's classification of China as a non-market economy.

However, by June 25, USA-China trade reports were focused on achievements and co-operation and Xinhua reported on the growing business opportunities between the two countries.

It said: "At present there are 22 Shanghai-funded enterprises in the US, and more than 30 Shanghai firms have gone to the US to hold trade fairs over the past three years; while some 500,000 American business people visited Shanghai in the five years from 1993-1997."

Xinhua highlighted US trade deals in the Guangxi autonomous region, which will be visited by President Clinton at the end of his trip, mentioning the region's vice-chairman's remark that "trade and economic exchanges between Guangxi and the US have seen outstanding achievements in the past decade and have a bright future".

The 'proper form'

Xinhua also reported that local Xian cadres got off to a good start, giving an official briefing to the more than 300 journalists covering the American president's trip.

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said coverage of the summit would be in the "proper form of news reports" rather than in the previous mode of joint statements.

China even noted that Chinese journalists had been sent to Clinton's home town in Arkansas to file back background reports.

BBC Monitoring (, based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.

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