Washington’s tariffs on Beijing are working: US commerce chief

Author: 
Reuters
ID: 
1570679753462985600
Thu, 2019-10-10 03:34

SYDNEY: Tariffs are forcing China to pay attention to US
concerns, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross said in Sydney on
Thursday.
Ross said the United States would have preferred not to implement
tariffs against Chinese goods more than a year ago, but added that
it has forced Beijing into action. The trade war has weighed on
global growth and roiled financial markets.
“We do not love tariffs, in fact we would prefer not to use them,
but after years of discussions and no action, tariffs are finally
forcing China to pay attention to our concerns,” Ross told a
business function held by the American Chamber of Commerce in
Australia.
“We could have had a deal two-and-a-half years ago without going
through the whole tit-for-tat on tariffs that we have.”
Ross is on an official visit to Australia.
Top US and Chinese trade and economic officials will meet in
Washington on Thursday and Friday to try to end the escalating
dispute.
Without a significant breakthrough, Washington is set to hike the
tariff rate on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods to 30 percent
from 25 percent next Tuesday.
Negotiators had made no progress in deputy-level trade talks held
on Monday and Tuesday in Washington, the South China Morning Post
(SCMP) said, citing unidentified sources with knowledge of the
meetings.
The two sides have been at loggerheads over US demands that China
improve protections of American intellectual property, end cyber
theft and the forced transfer of technology to Chinese firms, curb
industrial subsidies and increase US companies’ access to largely
closed Chinese markets.
Ross said the most difficult problem to solve in trade negotiations
with China was making sure that the terms of an agreement would be
adhered to.
“Trade agreements historically have been very weak on
enforcement,” Ross said.
“Given the magnitude and the complexity of the changes we need,
enforcement becomes an extremely critical component of any
agreement that we make.”

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Source: FS – All-News-Economy
Washington’s tariffs on Beijing are working: US commerce chief