China is confident in how it deals with external challenges and is further tapping the domestic market potential while accelerating the pace of negotiations with the European Union to reach a quality bilateral investment treaty, the Ministry of Commerce said on July 19.
Gao Feng, the ministry’s spokesman, said the United States is bullying the rest of the world with a big stick in the form of tariffs while claiming how innocent it is.
His comments came after some US officials recently blamed China for “negotiation failure”.
Gao said such an accusation is not true and China has been serious in resolving the trade dispute via negotiation in the four rounds of talks since February.
The spokesman reiterated that China’s stance on trade tensions with the US has always been the same.
The country will work with other economies to support international rules and the multilateral trading system, he said.
As for the US proposed additional tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, Gao said China will be forced to and certainly will take countermeasures when necessary.
Also on July 19, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said that US accusations of higher Chinese tariffs on US goods and pilfering US innovations are not convincing.
She made the statement when asked to comment on remarks of US Vice-President Mike Pence at the US Department of Commerce on July 16, accusing China of levying tariffs on the country’s goods three times higher than US tariffs on Chinese goods, and of stealing US technologies.
Hua said China always upholds fair trade and is advancing a new round of opening-up in order to create an open, transparent and fair business environment.
However, the US made various excuses and even used reasons like national security to create obstacles and restrictions on China’s investment and business activities in the US, she said.
The Ministry of Commerce said China aims to make more progress in talks regarding the China-EU bilateral investment treaty, as both sides exchanged market access offers during the 20th China-EU Leaders’ Meeting, which concluded in Beijing earlier this week.
Eager to restore their developing abilities, each side agreed to make negotiation of the agreement a top priority and strive to build an open, transparent, fair and predictable business environment for investors.
Zhang Yuyan, director of the Institute of World Economics and Politics at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said facing an environment of escalating US trade friction, Chinese investors will gradually turn to European partners for investment opportunities.
“The attitude of Chinese investors will not change if the US insists on going in an unpleasant way,” Zhang said.
Wei Jianguo, former vice-minister of commerce, said the US is not only targeting China, but also treating the whole world as an opponent.
“It will drag the global economy into danger,” he said. “Trade disputes will slow the growth momentum of global trade, impact the confidence of all economies and damage consumers’ living quality.”