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China will defend WTO rights if Trump moves on duties


11-24-2016 10:30 BJT

A Chinese official says China will defend its rights under World Trade Organization tariff rules if U.S. President-elect Donald Trump moves toward executing his campaign proposals to levy punitive duties on Chinese imports.

“I have been working with the WTO for more than 20 years. I think after Mr. Trump takes office, he will be reminded that the U.S. should honor its obligations as a member of the World Trade Organization, and as a member of the WTO, China also has the right to ensure its rights as such,” said Zhang Xiangchen, China’s Deputy International Trade representative.

Zhang was speaking at the closing news conference for the two-day meeting between U.S. and Chinese trade officials in Washington. He also said that a broad consensus among academics, business people and government officials has concluded that China is not manipulating its yuan currency to gain an unfair trade advantage as Trump has charged.

Zhang noted common interests between China and the U.S. far outweigh their differences, no matter how the leadership changes in the U.S. He said the two sides have good dialogue mechanisms to ensure relations will move forward “on a healthy track.”

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