Thirty years, seven visits: President Xi’s relationship with the US
By Meng Yaping

2017-04-06 10:21 GMT+8

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s upcoming visit to the US has drawn worldwide attention, as it will include his first meeting with US President Donald Trump since the latter took office. But President Xi is no stranger to the US. This will be his eighth visit to the country.
From Iowa houseguest to White House visitor, here’s a look at Xi’s previous seven trips.
April 1985 - Iowa
In 1985, Xi, then a young and promising junior official, led a five-person agricultural delegation to Muscatine, Iowa. He was then Party secretary of the Zhengding County Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), in north China's Hebei Province, according to Xinhua News Agency. Hebei Province and Iowa, the agricultural heartland of the US, were sister states.
Xi Jinping (L) in Iowa in April 1985. / Photo
Xi’s 1985 trip to the US is believed to have been his first trip overseas. During his time in Iowa, he stayed with an American family and visited farms, attended a local birthday party and picnicked on a boat on the Mississippi ‍River with his hosts. 
Xi Jinping (C) at the farm of Janet Rauch in Muscatine, Iowa, in April 1985. / Photo
Early 1990s - two visits
In 1992 and 1993, when Xi was Party Secretary of the Fuzhou Municipal CPC Committee, in southeast China, he traveled in American cities to study successful examples of city planning.
Xi Jinping (R), Party Secretary of the Fuzhou Municipal CPC Committee, talks with Connie Bacon, Commissioner of the Port of Tacoma, Washington in October 1993. / Photo
May 2006 – Washington DC, New York and New Jersey
Xi made his fourth trip to the US in 2006 as Party Secretary of China's eastern Zhejiang Province to promote economic and trade cooperation and communication, according to Xinhua.
In New York, he met with top US company managers, including Goldman Sachs CEO Henry Paulson.
He also attended a celebration marking 25 years of friendly state relations between Zhejiang and New Jersey, as well as a reception in Washington DC, held by Dong Jiling, former deputy director of the US Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA). 
Xi Jinping (R), Party Secretary of the Zhejiang CPC Committee, shakes hands with New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine in Trenton, New Jersey, in May 2006. / Photo
February 2012 – Washington DC, Iowa and California
Almost 27 years after his first trip to the US, Xi returned for the fifth time as vice president of China in 2012.
During that visit, he met with President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and highlighted the importance of a steady development of bilateral relations and promoting mutual benefits.
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (C) addresses a luncheon jointly hosted by his US counterpart Joe Biden (R) and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Washington DC, on February 14, 2012. /Xinhua Photo
After his stay in the capital, Xi flew to Muscatine, Iowa, where he met with old friends. The short stopover displayed the power of personal relationships, as Xi told the crowd: "You were the first group of Americans that I came into contact with. My impression of the country came from you. To me, you are America."
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (3rd R, front) joins locals for tea at the home of his old friend Sarah Lande (3rd, L) in Muscatine, Iowa in February 2012. /Xinhua Photo
Xi also watched an NBA match between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Phoenix Suns at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (C) with Los Angeles Galaxy player David Beckham and former Lakers star Magic Johnson at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California in February 2012. /Xinhua Photo
June 2013 - Sunnylands, California
Three months after Xi took office as president, he met with US President Barack Obama at the Sunnylands estate in Rancho Mirage, California. "President Xi is no stranger to the United States," Obama noted.  
The two leaders reached a consensus on building a new model for China-US relations, with no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect, cooperation and common prosperity, according to Xinhua.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) and US President Barack Obama take a walk at the Sunnylands estate in California, in June 2013. /Xinhua Photo
Aside from talks on serious issues including military relations, cyber security and climate change, the two presidents were also seen strolling side by side on the estate under the desert sun, without jackets or ties.
September 2015 - Seattle, Washington DC and New York
In 2015, Xi paid a state visit to the US, first visiting the Boeing Paine Field Assembly plant in Seattle, Washington, before flying to the US capital and meeting with President Obama.
During the talks, the two leaders agreed to continue endeavors to build a new model of major-country relationship based on mutual respect and win-win cooperation. 
Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) talks with US President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington DC, in September 2015. /Xinhua Photo
The two sides also reached agreements on trade, climate change, technology and infrastructure construction, among others. 
Chinese President Xi Jinping addresses the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the UN Headquarters in New York, on September 28, 2015. /Xinhua Photo
Xi also attended the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the UN Headquarters in New York. In his first speech at the UN General Assembly, Xi said China will never give up its pursuit of peaceful development and announced a series of major actions in support of the UN and its peacekeeping efforts.
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