At least she didn’t have to build it herself.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday hailed the successful completion of the U.S. Pavilion at the Shanghai Expo — the whiz-bang coming-out party for the financial heart of an up-and-coming economic superpower.
It was, by all accounts, a U.S. building that almost didn’t get built, and Clinton said she was gratified that U.S. businesses stepped up to fund the $61 million pavilion — a move made necessary by U.S. laws which forbid the spending of public money on such showpieces.
“I vowed last year that I would personally build the pavilion if I had to, so we could be part of that Expo. Thankfully I did not because all of you worked together to make this a great success,” Clinton said at a special meeting in the State Department marking the official opening of the Shanghai extravaganza.
Clinton plans to visit the pavilion next month when she goes to China for a round of high-level meetings, and she said she was thrilled that Expo visitors — estimated at some 70 million people over its six month duration — would get a good picture of the United States.
“We expect that this will be the largest event, some say, in human history … it will certainly be very, very big,” Clinton said. “We’re going to showcase a lot of what is best about America.”