The Chinese government will be permitted to open a consulate in Los Angeles in an arrangement that will make it the first Communist Bloc country to maintain a diplomatic presence in Southern California, the State Department has announced.
No site or opening date has been fixed for the consulate, which will become Beijing's fifth in the United States. As part of the reciprocal agreement, the United States has been granted the right to open its own fifth consulate, in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, although State Department spokeswoman Debbie Cavin said there are no plans to do that "in the near future."
Other Chinese consulates are in San Francisco, Chicago, Houston and New York.
Honolulu Plan Dropped
The Chinese request for the second California consulate came in May, 1985, when the government changed its mind and asked for a Los Angeles consulate, rather than the original Honolulu site it had initially agreed to.
"The Chinese asked to open a consulate here instead because the Los Angeles area is more important commercially to China, and has a significantly larger number of (Chinese) students than Honolulu," Cavin said.