United States seeks targeted commitments from China on market access

Reuters

Reuters

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on Tuesday said they will be seeking explicit agreements from China this week providing USA companies easier access to Chinese consumer markets, Reuters reports.

In a speech to US and Chinese business leaders at a luncheon, Wang said China has set about allowing broader market access and a greater opening of its services sector. -China Comprehensive Economic Dialogue, will kick off on Wednesday in Washington D.C. The discussions will be led by U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and China's Vice Premier Wang Yang.

Ross acknowledged that the dialogue has become more challenging as USA and Chinese officials grapple with more sensitive issues.

"China has in recent years revised at its own initiative the Catalogue for the Guidance of Foreign Investment Industries several times, leaving only 63 industries under restriction, 117 fewer than that of the 2011 version, down by an impressive 65 percent", he said.

According to data, the US deficit with China in the trade of goods reached a whopping 347 billion dollars previous year. The Trump administration has hinted that China could face sanctions or unfavorable trade terms from the US, if it does not exert more pressure on Pyongyang.

The annual bilateral talks, launched in 2006 and expanded by former President Barack Obama to include strategic and security issues, have been pared back under Trump to focus on trade and economic issues.

Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Yang told the luncheon that Beijing has its own concerns to be addressed in the talks, including "outdated" United States export controls for high-technology products.

According to a translated text of his remarks, Wang said allowing such sales to China would help reduce the US trade deficit, noting that China imported $227 billion worth of integrated circuits previous year, but only 4 percent of that came from the United States.

He added that the U.S. and China have no choice but to cooperate economically even if they wanted to buy and hire locally.

"It is important that both sides come to realize with cool heads that given the depth of our business cooperation, neither Chinese nor Americans can do without goods from the other country", Wang said.

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