To help ensure products shipped to the United States meet US safety and manufacturing standards, the FDA plans to establish eight full-time, permanent positions at US diplomatic posts in the next 18 months in the People’s Republic of China, pending the Chinese government’s approval.

Spurred in part by the globalized economy—which has triggered increased regulatory interoperability, information exchange, and cooperation on product quality and enforcement issues—the move is expected to improve access to safe medical devices, drugs, and food worldwide, the agency says.

The FDA’s Beyond our Borders initiative helps boost cooperative relationships with counterpart agencies and technical cooperation with foreign regulators worldwide.

Plans are afoot to hire five local Chinese nationals to join FDA staff at the US Embassy in Beijing, and with US Consulates General in Shanghai and Guangzhou.

For more information, visit the FDA’s Web site.