Shoppers sit on a bench with a decorated with US flag browsing their smartphones outside a fashion boutique selling U.S. brand clothing at the capital city's popular shopping mall in Beijing. China raised tariffs Monday on thousands of US goods in an escalation of its fight with President Donald Trump.(AP)
Shoppers sit on a bench with a decorated with US flag browsing their smartphones outside a fashion boutique selling U.S. brand clothing at the capital city's popular shopping mall in Beijing. China raised tariffs Monday on thousands of US goods in an escalation of its fight with President Donald Trump.(AP)

China policy paper blames US for trade war, protests ‘brazen ‘unilateralism’

Donald Trump administration is preaching economic hegemony and using trade tariffs to intimidate China, says white paper released in Beijing.
By Sutirtho Patranobis | Hindustan Times, Beijing
UPDATED ON SEP 24, 2018 04:07 PM IST

The Donald Trump administration is preaching economic hegemony and using trade tariffs to intimidate China, said a new government policy paper released by Beijing on Monday.

By adopting an “America First” policy, the Trump administration has abandoned “fundamental norms of mutual respect and equal consultation” in international relations, the white paper on the ongoing US-China trade war said.

The official policy paper was released in Beijing as the Trump administration’s tariffs on another $200 billion in Chinese goods--levied last week--kicked in on Monday, ramping up a trade war between the world’s two biggest economies. China is poised to retaliate with tariffs on $60 billion in US goods.

Trump has said he would then retaliate new duties on another $267 billion in Chinese imports.

The new US duties cover nearly 6,000 items--including items ranging from rice to handbags--making them the biggest round of trade tariffs from Washington.

The trade war, argued the white paper, was triggered because of the Trump administration’s wrong policies. “Rather, it (the US government) has brazenly preached unilateralism, protectionism and economic hegemony, making false accusations against many countries and regions, particularly China, intimidating other countries through economic measures such as imposing tariffs, and attempting to impose its own interests on China through extreme pressure,” according to the white paper.

The lengthy paper--comprising 360,00 Chinese characters--argued that trade frictions between a developed and a developing economy are natural but differences should be handled in a mature manner.

“The key, however, lies in how to enhance mutual trust, promote cooperation, and manage differences,” it said.

The US side, however, has been contradicting itself and constantly challenging China, the white paper said.

“As a result, trade and economic friction between the two sides has escalated quickly over a short period of time, causing serious damage to the economic and trade relations which have developed over the years through the collective work of the two governments and the two peoples, and posing a grave threat to the multilateral trading system and the principle of free trade,” it added.

The Chinese side has been dealing with these differences with an attitude of seeking common ground while shelving divergence, the white paper said.

“It has overcome many difficulties and made enormous efforts to stabilise China-US economic and trade relations by holding rounds of discussions with the US side and proposing practical solutions.”

“In the spirit of equality, rationality, and moving to meet each other halfway, the two countries have set up a number of communication and coordination mechanisms such as the Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade, the Strategic and Economic Dialogue, and the Comprehensive Economic Dialogue,” the white paper said.

“Each has made tremendous efforts over the past 40 years to overcome all kinds of obstacles and move economic and trade relations forward, which has served as the ballast and propeller of the overall bilateral relationship,” according to the white paper.

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