New Delhi: Under pressure and locked in a bitter trade war, China has sought India’s cooperation to fight against trade protectionism adopted by the US under President Donald Trump.
The US has imposed $200 billion tariff on Chinese imports, with threats to impose additional tariffs of $260 billion. China, in response, has slapped tariffs on $60 billion of American imports. Neither of the two countries are willing to give-in, and there are no immediate trade talks scheduled to resolve the issue.
“Under the current circumstances, China and India need to deepen their cooperation to fight trade protectionism,” Counsellor Ji Rong, the Chinese Embassy spokesperson said, IANS reported.
Calling the imposing of tariffs by US as unilateralism and bullying, he said China and India have more reasons to join efforts to build a more just and reasonable international order.
“Practicing unilateral trade protectionism in the name of ‘national security’ and ‘fair trade’ will not only affect China’s economic development but also undermine the external environment of India and hinder India’s booming economy,” IANS quoted him as saying.
China–United States trade war
US President Donald Trump had promised in his campaign to fix China’s “longtime abuse of the broken international system and unfair practices”. Starting in January 2018, the U.S imposed a tariff on solar panel imports, most of which are manufactured in China.
On July 6, the U.S. specifically targeted China by imposing 25% tariffs on $34 billion of imported Chinese goods as part of Trump’s tariffs policy, which then led China to respond with similarly sized tariffs on U.S. products.
The U.S. administration is relying partly on Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 to prevent what it claims are unfair trade practices and theft of intellectual property.
China won’t back down
In a report by South China Morning Star, China’s Commerce Minister Zhong Shan said: “They (US) don’t know the history and culture of this unyielding nation”.
“There is a view in the US that so long as the US keeps increasing tariffs, China will back down. They don’t know the history and culture of China,” Zhong said adding “this unyielding nation suffered foreign bullying for many times in history, but never succumbed to it even in the most difficult conditions. China doesn’t want a trade war, but would rise up to it should it break out.”
“The US should not underestimate China’s resolve and will,” he warned.