Senator Max Baucus, a Montana Democrat who earlier this year announced he would retire from the U.S. Senate in 2014, will be nominated by President Barack Obama to be the next ambassador to China, according to a Senate staffer.
Baucus currently chairs the powerful Senate Finance Committee, which oversees tax and trade policy. He was first elected to the Senate in 1978.
(Read more: Top US Senate tax writer urges corporate tax revamp)
Obama's choice of the 72-year-old Baucus to be ambassador to China must be confirmed by the Senate. The chamber is not expected to consider the nomination until early next year.