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Chinese Commerce Minister stresses trade cooperation with US


02-22-2017 09:57 BJT

Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng says trade war should not be an option for China-US economic engagement.  He pointed out that the two economies are heavily intertwined, and said the two nations should work together to benefit their two peoples and the world economy.

Last year, China-US trade volume reached nearly 520 billion US dollars. That's more than 200 times more than in 1979, when the two countries established diplomatic relations.

China’s Commerce Minister, Gao Hucheng, told the media on Tuesday, that it’s impossible to avoid disagreements and conflicts in such a large scale bi-lateral economic engagement. But despite the twists and turns, economic exchanges have always moved forward.

"In 1991, 1994 and 1996, China and the US experienced intense disputes over intellectual property three times, but we were always able to resolve these frictions and problems through negotiation, communication, and coordination," Gao said.

America’s new president, Donald Trump, seems to be adding potential risks to the economic relationship.  During his campaign, he promised to impose extra tariffs on Chinese imports.

Gao says China believes countries should abide by international trade regulations while making trade policies.  He says Beijing will evaluate specific policies of the Trump administration, then deal with them.

The US is China’s largest export market and an import source of foreign investment. And China is the US export market with the second fastest growth rate. Gao says that America’s trade in goods and services exported to China has in total created nearly nine-billion jobs for the US in 2015.

As the two countries’ interests are heavily intertwined, Gao believes cooperation is the only correct choice.

"Trade war should not become an option. Given the weak global economic recovery, as the two largest economies in the world, China and the US should cooperate to facilitate the sustained growth of bilateral trade and investment," Gao said.

Gao says China will let enterprises handle trade disputes themselves first.  But if things can't be resolved, the government will step in to protect the interests of Chinese enterprises in accordance with WTO rules and regulations.

China's Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng also said that cooperation between China and the US will benefit both sides, while a lack of cooperation would harm the two countries. Gao added that China would not hide or run away from areas of disagreement, and would like to properly resolve the problems.

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