In July 1976, the National Committee organized the first Congressional staff member delegation to the People’s Republic. The 14 participants were drawn from 11 different House and Senate committees and had a broad range of interests. The historic trip included stops in Beijing, Xinxiang, Nanjing, Yangzhou, Wuxi, and Shanghai; the delegation visited a People’s Liberation Army unit and a review of local militia, spent two full days on communes, made several trips to rural healthcare facilities, and received extensive economic briefings. The Chinese People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs was the host organization.
In recent years, the Committee has continued these Congressional staff trips. In 2007 a staff delegation visited several small cities and towns in western China’s Qinghai Province. Topics of discussion included border security, counterterrorism and narcotics trafficking. The most recent staff delegation in March 2008 focused on energy security and counter-narcotics trafficking, and included visits to Beijing, the Xishuangbana region and China-Burma border, and Shanghai.