– This is the script of CNBC's news report for China's CCTV on December 14, Wednesday.
Welcome to CNBC Business Daily, I'm Qian Chen.
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump announced Exxon Mobil Chief Executive Officer Rex Tillerson as his choice for secretary of state on Tuesday, praising him as a successful international dealmaker who leads a global operation.
Tillerson's experience in diplomacy stems from making deals with foreign countries for Exxon, the world's largest energy company, although questions have been raised about his relations with Russia.
"He will be a forceful and clear-eyed advocate for America's vital national interests and help reverse years of misguided foreign policies and actions that have weakened America's security and standing in the world," Trump said in a statement.
Tillerson has been chief executive of Exxon Mobil since 2006 and, like Trump, has never held public office. He said he shared the president-elect's "vision for restoring the credibility of the United States' foreign relations and advancing our country's national security."
Their support is seen as crucial to helping Tillerson get past a possibly contentious Senate confirmation battle likely to focus on his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Lawmakers from both major parties raised concerns about the oilman's relationship with Moscow. Republican U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, in a statement, said he had "serious concerns" about Tillerson's nomination.
[JEFFREY WRIGHT, Eurasia Group US Researcher] "Certainly Tillerson is the first of Trump's nominee that faces any real danger of not clearing the bar for confirmation on the Senate, which is made earlier by the fact that they need only 50 votes instead of 60, which Hillary changed the rule a few years back. So I think as it stands out, it will probably still be confirmed."
Trump is confident that Tillerson can get past questions about his ties to Russia, the transition official said.
CNBC Qian Chen, reporting from Singapore.