WASHINGTON -- U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk met with China's ambassador in Washington to discuss trade, military cooperation and fostering ties between the nations' people.
Kirk says the two countries have become interdependent and, as large economies and energy consumers, they can cooperate in numerous areas.
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China is the third largest market for exports from Illinois. That's according to the U.S. China Business Council. Crops represent the No. 1 export, accounting for $2.4 billion last year.
While a member of the U.S. House, Kirk co-founded the House U.S.-China Working Group. A similar body is about to begin work in the Senate this fall.
Sen. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii also took part in Tuesday's meeting with Ambassador Cui Tiankai.