An important piece of policy currently standing in the way of U.S. businesses in China was coming out of Washington, rather than Beijing, he said. He was referring to the reauthorization of the U.S. Export-Import Bank, which continues to be held up in Congress. Since the bank's operational charter expired in July it has not been able to process any new financial commitments to help U.S. businesses win contracts at home and abroad.
"The US congress has made a decision that the US should be the only major economy that doesn't have an export credit financing capability," Ric e told CNBC. "There are 50 other countries that have them. We think this is just crazy."
Rice said the reauthorization hold-up threatened U.S. jobs because overseas customers could push for production to be moved to facilities in countries that offered export financing support.
"Choice is determined by our customers, who say, when we bid, you must submit a bid that includes export credit financing," said Rice.
With the U.S. going to the polls next year, Rice added that there was a need for having a strong leader who understood the global business environment.
"If you think you can create enemies, build walls, not pass trade agreements, and exist effectively in a global economy, then you're looking at a world that's much different than the one I see," Rice warned. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has mooted the possibility build walls on the U.S.-Mexican border to stop the inflow of migrants and has on several occasions taken digs at China.
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On Europe, Rice remained upbeat despite the turmoil created first by the Greek crisis and more recently by the unexpected influx of migrants, largely from war-torn Syria.
"We like Europe. You can't paint Europe with one brush," he said, pointing out that the socio-economic and political differences between various European countries provided pockets of growth opportunity for GE.
GE last week won approval from EU regulators for its purchase of French power company Alstom's energy business, and Rice was sanguine about the near-eight months it had taken for his company to get the green light for its largest-ever deal.
He acknowledged that an aggressive regulatory environment was not unique to the EU: "I think a company like ours has to accept that that's just the way it's going to be."