It’s unfair to say US at a disadvantage in trade with China: Chinese official

The tariffs would put the global industrial chain at fragmenting risk by breaking the connection between the industries of different countries, leave it in a state of disorder by betraying international economic and trade rules, and expose the global industrial chain to greater risks of low efficiency by reducing the efficiency of global economic operations, he explained.

By Wang Ke from People’s Daily

Washington’s accusation that it suffered losses from its trade with China cannot hold water at all, Chinese official pointed out at a Tuesday press conference held by the Information Office of the State Council, explaining the newly released white paper to Chinese and foreign media.

The white paper titled “The Facts and China’s Position on China-US Trade Friction” was published by China on Monday to clarify the facts about China-US economic and trade relations, demonstrate its stance on trade friction with the US, and pursue reasonable solutions.

Senior officials from six departments of Chinese government including the Ministry of Commerce, National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Ministry of Finance, and National Intellectual Property Administration answered questions at the press briefing.

“Some people in the US accused China of unfair competition leading to a huge US trade deficit in goods with China and losses on the US side. Itis not consistent with the facts.” Fu Ziying, China International Trade Representative and Vice Minister of Commerce, told the press conference.

“The accusation from US cannot hold water at all, only to mislead the public ,” he stressed, adding that China-US economic and trade cooperation, which was the natural result of the complementarity of Chinese and American industries and the inevitable choice of the international division of labor, was in the common interests of the two peoples.

In fact, the China-US trade gap did not indicate one side’s gain or loss, but showed the balance in trade volume, Fu said, adding that no one knew better than the related enterprises and consumers themselves on whether or not the US had suffered losses in the bilateral trade.

The trade imbalance between the two countries, according to Fu, can also be attributed to American export controls on China.

Relevant American institutions analyzed that the US trade deficit with China would be reduced by as much as 35 percent if America relaxed its restriction on exportation of high-tech products for civilian use to China.

Another important reason for the current unfavorable trade balance was that the US didn’t export what China wanted to import, he pointed out.

“America’s punitive tariffs on $200 billion of its imports from China will have both direct and indirect impacts on the Chinese economy, with more influence on some industries and regions,” said Lian Weiliang, deputy director of China’s National Development and Reform Commission.

But he stressed at the same time that the risks were generally controllable, and the Chinese economy had the ability to hedge through boosting domestic demand.

Lian further explained that various parts of Chinese economy, which had a complete range of industries and multi-element components, could complement and replace each other,  helping  the market to cope with external shocks with great flexibility and resilience.

China enjoyed huge potential for increasing investment thanks to the robust domestic market and imbalanced regional development, Lian pointed out, adding that it created favorable conditions for China to cope with the fluctuation of external demand.

In addition, China was seeing continuously enhanced competitiveness of its market entities, Lian added.

As one of the World Trade Organization (WTO) members, China formulated the policies of subsidies in conformity with the stipulations of the WTO, said Zou Jiayi, Vice Minister of Finance, who added that under market economy rules, subsidy was a policy instrument widely used by governments of many countries around the world including China and the US to address market failures and imbalance.

Luo Wen, Vice Minister of Industry and Information Technology, pointed out that the additional US tariffs on Chinese goods would cause great harm to and exert negative influences on global industrial chain.

The tariffs would put the global industrial chain at fragmenting risk by breaking the connection between the industries of different countries, leave it in a state of disorder by betraying international economic and trade rules, and expose the global industrial chain to greater risks of low efficiency by reducing the efficiency of global economic operations, he explained.

The trade war had an impact on the whole industrial chain. It would not only hurt Chinese enterprises, but also companies in the US and even in the world at large, said Wang Shouwen, Vice Minister of Commerce and Deputy China International Trade Representative.

Accusations of China’s alleged ineffective protection of intellectual property rights were entirely groundless and untenable, said Deputy Director He Hua of China’s National Intellectual Property Administration.

He added that people who made such accusations disregarded the great progress yielded from China’s long-term endeavors to construct its intellectual property protection system, its rapid improvement in innovation, and the fact that China was actually also an  owner of many intellectual properties.

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