An Important Visit

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 - 9:54am

China's Vice President comes to the U.S. to talk about many important issues.

China's Vice President Xi Jinping is in Washington today.

He arrived in Washington for what essentially will be a "getting to know you" visit, as well as discuss issues like the economy, nuclear threats, trade and human rights.

The U.S. is hoping to build strong ties with the man believed to be china's next leader. "The most important thing that will come out of this trip is what we don't see, which is this effort to try to develop a very close relationship," said Victor Cha of the Center for Strategic & International Studies.

The White House says President Obama's trying to shift U.S. foreign policy from the Middle East to Asia. "He has sought to rebalance our focus and our national security approach, as well as our economic approach," said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.

And the Obama Administration's been aggressively pursuing Chinese companies that violate intellectual property rights.

The economy is likely to be a big part of today's meeting. The U.S. is exploring sanctions against China for manipulating its currency. "It's not right when another country lets our movies, music, and software be pirated," said President Barack Obama

Nuclear threats, human rights and Syria are also likely on today's agenda. "We do not want to see a civil war in Syria," said Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

But China sees it differently and recently vetoed an Arab League peace plan calling on Syria's president to step down.

From here, Xi Jinping travels to Los Angeles and Iowa, to visit a family there he lived with over 25 years ago.

Tracie Potts, NBC News, Washington.

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