President Clinton's predecessor George Bush said Thursday he approved of Clinton's planned visit to China and his renewal of its most-favored-nation trade status.
Both Clinton moves are under fire from many of Bush's fellow Republicans.On Clinton's planned visit to China from June 25 to July 3, Bush told Reuters, "It would be an important trip. Yes, it would be constructive."
Asked if he favored MFN, Bush said: "Absolutely. I fought hard for it when I was president, and I'm strongly in favor of it."
Bush was in Singapore on a private visit of about 24 hours, with no public events scheduled, diplomatic sources said.
Clinton said Wednesday he was renewing MFN status, which carries major trade benefits, for China for another year because it was crucial the two nations maintained solid trade relations.
But his decision faces a tough fight in the Republican-led Congress, which is investigating allegations that sensitive U.S. rocket technology was transferred to China and campaign contributions flowed from China to Clinton's fellow U.S. Democrats.