USTR says new trade tools are needed to fight China’s state-run trade

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai testifies before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies during a hearing on the proposed fiscal year 2022 budget for the U.S. Representative’s Office at Commerce on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., April 28, 2021. Bill O’Leary/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

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WASHINGTON, Feb 16 (Reuters) – The United States must pursue new strategies and update its domestic trade tools to deal with China’s “state-directed non-trade policies and practices”, the office said on Wednesday. from the U.S. Trade Representative in a new statement. evaluation report.

The USTR said in its annual report on China’s compliance with World Trade Organization rules that the “Phase 1” trade deal signed by the Trump administration two years ago has not been met. fundamental US concerns about China’s industrial policies and support policies, including “massive financial resources”. “

He said such support, which includes favorable regulatory support for Chinese industry and limited market access for imported goods and services, often targets specific capacity, production and market share targets.

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The report, delivered to Congress every year since China joined the WTO in 2001, is the first published under the leadership of US Trade Representative Katherine Tai and reflects her trade strategy with China.

It follows final 2021 trade data showing Beijing fell short of promised two-year targets for buying American goods, services and energy under the Phase 1 deal, which has facilitated a tariff war between the world’s two largest economies. Read more

“China has not embraced the market-oriented principles on which the WTO and its rules are based, despite statements it made when it joined 20 years ago,” Tai said in a statement. . “China has instead retained and expanded its state-led, non-market approach to the economy and trade.”

The USTR report says the United States must update its domestic trade law tools to reflect the current realities of China’s trade policies “to ensure a fairer level playing field for workers and businesses.” Americans”.

A sweeping China competition bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives and pending in the Senate would expand the use of anti-subsidy tariffs to target cross-border subsidies for Chinese companies investing in offshore production to circumvent US duties.

“It is also evident that existing business tools need to be strengthened and new business tools must be forged,” the USTR said in the report. “China pursues unfair policies and practices that were not contemplated when many US trade laws were written decades ago, and so we are exploring ways to update our trade tools to counter them.”

The report said the United States is still pursuing bilateral engagement “to hold China accountable to its existing commitments,” including under the Phase 1 deal.

He also said China has failed to meet other Phase 1 commitments. These include regulatory approvals for US agricultural biotechnology and a risk assessment on the use of ractopamine, a food additive used to produce leaner pork and beef in the United States.

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Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Edwina Gibbs

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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