US urged to man­age dif­fer­ences, co­op­er­ate

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - FRONT PAGE - By JING SHUIYU jing­shuiyu@chi­

China hopes the United States will join ef­forts to ex­plore ap­pro­pri­ate ways to re­solve dif­fer­ences and pro­mote co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the world’s two largest economies, the Min­istry of Com­merce said on Thurs­day.

An­a­lysts said that to re­solve the cur­rent trade dis­putes, the two coun­tries should shift their fo­cus to mak­ing the eco­nomic pie big­ger in or­der to ben­e­fit both, as the two economies are com­ple­men­tary.

Gao Feng, a min­istry spokesman, said at a news con­fer­ence that the coun­try is open to re­sum­ing ne­go­ti­a­tions with the US on bi­lat­eral in­vest­ment and ini­ti­at­ing talks on a free-trade agree­ment at a proper time. “But re­gret­tably, the US has failed to demon­strate its sin­cer­ity.”

China and the US ini­ti­ated talks in 2008 on a bi­lat­eral in­vest­ment treaty, the sign­ing of which will ease two-way in­vest­ment pro­ce­dures. The ongoing trade ten­sions have brought more un­cer­tainty to its pos­si­bil­ity of suc­cess.

He re­it­er­ated that China has not, and will not, en­gage in “eco­nomic ag­gres­sion”. On the con­trary, China hopes to share op­por­tu­ni­ties with all its eco­nomic and trade part­ners and grow to­gether with them to boost world eco­nomic growth.

Gao was re­spond­ing to US Vice-Pres­i­dent Mike Pence’s ac­cu­sa­tions to­ward China last week. In a speech, Pence said the ad­min­is­tra­tion would levy even more tar­iffs, with the pos­si­bil­ity of more than dou­bling the cur­rent level, un­less a “fair and re­cip­ro­cal” deal is made.

In re­sponse to Pence’s claim that much of China’s suc­cess was driven by US in­vest­ment and trade im­bal­ances, Gao said the coun­try does not deny the con­tri­bu­tion US in­vest­ment has made to its eco­nomic growth, al­though it ac­counts for a small pro­por­tion of to­tal for­eign in­vest­ment in China.

Since 1987, China has seen $2 tril­lion in for­eign in­vest­ment, of which the US ac­counted for $81.4 bil­lion, or 4.1 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to the min­istry.

Wang Huiyao, pres­i­dent of the Cen­ter for China and Glob­al­iza­tion, said Chi­nese and US pol­i­cy­mak­ers should “make the eco­nomic pie big­ger”, build on the agree­ments al­ready reached through bi­lat­eral ne­go­ti­a­tions and work to in­crease Sino-US bi­lat­eral trade and op­por­tu­ni­ties in ser­vices trade, Wang said. They should also seek fur­ther tar­iff re­duc­tions through bi­lat­eral ne­go­ti­a­tions and re-en­gage in the Bi­lat­eral In­vest­ment Treaty talks.

Long Guo­qiang, vice-pres­i­dent of the De­vel­op­ment Re­search Cen­ter of the State Coun­cil, said the trade ten­sions will not change the two na­tions’ over­all eco­nomic com­ple­men­tar­ity, as they are com­ple­men­tary in terms of in­dus­trial struc­tures, tech­nolo­gies and re­sources. “Their eco­nomic and trade re­la­tions will rise to a higher level in both scale and sub­stance in the com­ing 10 years.”

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