Washington, D.C. – Yesterday, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) hosted a bipartisan meeting with His Excellency Wang Yi, Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China to discuss North Korea sanctions, tensions in the South China Sea and bilateral trade opportunities.

Following the meeting, Chairman Royce issued this statement:  “Today I stressed the real threat North Korea’s nuclear arsenal poses to Northeast Asia and the United States.  That is why President Obama recently signed into law my legislation targeting banks and companies that do business with this dangerous regime.  Our allies, including Japan and South Korea, have also taken steps to tighten the screws on Kim Jung Un and it is important that China follow suit. 

“Additionally, I pressed on the importance of China abiding by the 1951 Refugee Convention and 1967 Protocol, for which China is a party to, that prohibits the practice of repatriating refugees.  Sending back North Koreans is a major humanitarian concern.

“We also discussed the South China Sea.  The South China Sea is one of the most strategic maritime straights in Asia, and it is critical that all nations have navigational freedom.  Countries in the Asia Pacific are nervous, and rightly so, over the recent increase in tensions in the region.  Instability is in no one’s interest.     

“As the two largest economies in the world, the U.S. and China need a positive and enduring commercial relationship.  That is why a bilateral investment treaty that protects property rights and bolsters the rule of law is essential to protecting U.S. companies and strengthening the U.S.-China economic relationship.”