This post was edited by sansukong at 2012-3-9 07:02|
Stop blaming China for trade problem, US told
Source: Agencies | 2012-3-8 | NEWSPAPER EDITION
A US trade bill targeting Chinese imports goes against international rules and China will not adjust the value of its
currency to try to bridge a trade deficit that is Washington's problem to fix, Chinese Commerce Minister Chen
Deming said yesterday.
US President Barack Obama is set to sign the bill into law to allow duties to be imposed on subsidized goods
from China and Vietnam.
"We follow the rules of the WTO, but we have no obligation to follow domestic laws or
regulations in any specific country that go beyond international rules," Chen told a
news conference during the annual meeting of parliament.
Chen said China had done a better job of bringing balance to global trade than the United States, bringing its trade
surplus down to 2.1 percent of economic output in 2011 while the trade deficit of the United States was 4.8 percent
of its gross domestic product.
He said it was clear that the United States had a responsibility to close its own deficit.
"Why did the US have a US$700 billion overall trade deficit? Why did China have an
overall trade surplus of only US$150 billion but a trade surplus of US$200 billion with the
United States?" Chen responded to a journalist's question.
"Every man free from prejudice and armed with common-sense economics can come
to the right conclusion."
Chen's comments came a day after the US Congress passed the bill that Obama is set to sign into law. A US court
ruled in December that the US Commerce Department did not have authority to impose countervailing - or anti-
subsidy - duties on goods from "non-market economies." Chen said US criticism of China was unfounded.
"The US government had subsidized its companies, like the three big automakers ... but China did not criticize these
moves or start massive counter vailing actions against such moves," Chen said.
Chen added that China's yuan exchange rate was now close to its fair value, and China had no intention of letting the
yuan appreciate sharply.
Asked about a World Trade Organization Working Group on Trade, Debt and Finance meeting that would discuss the
relationship between exchange rates and trade, Chen said the yuan should not be what he called an "academic
"I have noticed that the US trade representative and treasury secretary have noted to the Congress that they would use
the meeting, as well as other events, to push forward yuan reform," Chen said.
"When I heard about this, I thought I heard wrong. They should push the US dollar reform since the US trade deficit
is about 4.8 percent (of GDP)," he said.
"China believes all countries should maintain the basic stability of their exchange rates, against the
background of global financial crisis," he said. "Any country's measures to devalue its own
currencies or force other countries' currencies to appreciate is not appropriate."
China's growing manufacturing strength has been coupled with a rising trade surplus that has exacerbated friction with
the United States and other trading partners.