Beijing, January 15
President Xi Jinping has asked Starbucks former CEO Howard Schultz to help repair US-Chinese ties.
A letter from Xi to Schultz reported on Friday by the official Xinhua News Agency was a rare direct communication from China’s paramount leader to a foreign business figure. Schultz opened Starbucks’ first China outlet in 1999 and is a frequent visitor. Xi wrote to Schultz “to encourage him and Starbucks to continue to play an active role in promoting Chinese-US economic and trade cooperation”. Schultz, who was Starbucks CEO until 2017 and chairman until 2018, led an aggressive expansion that made China its biggest market outside the US. Starbucks
has more than 4,700 stores and 58,000 employees in 190 Chinese cities. — Agencies