Thursday, April 1, 2010 | 5:30 PM EDT - 5:30 PM EDT

Former Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for China Affairs Timothy P. Stratford discussed challenges in U.S.-China economic relations in an off-the record program at the Covington and Burling office in New York on April 1, 2010. He highlighted some of the core trade issues in the U.S.-China relationship, discussed the available tools and approaches for addressing these issues, and described the complex context in which these tools may be used.

When Mr. Stratford learned that members of the media planned to attend his presentation, he very generously offered to meet with them separately after the formal program for an on-the-record question and answer session. Half a dozen reporters had a very fruitful conversation with Mr. Stratford. Originally called for 20 to 30 minutes, the lively discussion actually went on for an hour.

At USTR Mr. Stratford was responsible for developing and implementing U.S. trade policy toward mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macao and Mongolia. Prior to joining USTR, Mr. Stratford spent more than 20 years in China, serving as general counsel for General Motors’ China operations, working as partner in the Beijing office of Coudert Brothers, serving as Minister-Counselor for Commercial Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, and working as an attorney at Paul Weiss in Beijing and Hong Kong.

Mr. Stratford returned to Beijing in mid-April as a partner with Covington and Burling. A member of the firm’s international trade, intellectual property and government practice groups, he advises global clients doing business in China, and assists Chinese companies seeking to expand their businesses internationally.

Mr. Stratford earned his law degree at the Harvard Law School and has a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and Chinese from Brigham Young University. He is fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese.

Politics & Foreign Relations