Jiang Zemin left the mark of reform on his country, its people, and the world. He was a visionary president who brought stability to China and spearheaded changes that transformed the country. Under his leadership, China pursued market reforms that helped bring millions of Chinese people out of poverty and into the middle class. China also took important steps to join the international community and to open to the world. I am pleased I was able to spend time with a man who had a sense of humor, a deep understanding of the need to support the private sector, a vision for the economic future of the Chinese people, support for the environment, and an appreciation for the importance of a stable US-China relationship.
I extend my prayers to his family and the people of China, who grieve the loss of a man who reshaped their country.