Date
15 December 2017
Washington wants "specific deliverables by specific dates" with regard to expanding the US market access in China, says US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. Photo: Reuters
Washington wants "specific deliverables by specific dates" with regard to expanding the US market access in China, says US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. Photo: Reuters

US seeks targeted commitments from China on market access

The United States will be looking for specific agreements this week from Beijing on the issue of expanding the US access to the Chinese market, top officials in the Donald Trump administration said on Tuesday.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he hopes China will lift foreign ownership restrictions in its financial services sector to allow more US participation, and remove barriers to trade in its information and communication technology sector, Reuters reports.

“My hope is that we can increase our focus on concrete and targeted commitments to address both short-term and long-term strategic challenges,” Mnuchin was quoted as saying at a business lunch before the start of Sino-US bilateral economic talks in Washington.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, meanwhile, said some initial deals announced in April, as part of a 100-day economic plan aimed at reducing the US trade deficit with China, were a “good start.”

“Our objective, however, will continue to be specific deliverables by specific dates so that everyone on both sides can measure the results on a continuing basis,” he said.

The annual bilateral negotiating session, launched in 2006 and rebranded this year as the “U.S.-China Comprehensive Economic Dialogue,” will formally take place on Wednesday.

Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Yang told the luncheon that Beijing has its own concerns to be addressed in the talks, including “outdated” US export controls for high-technology products.

Allowing such sales to China will help reduce the US trade deficit, Wang said, noting that China imported US$227 billion worth of integrated circuits last year, but only 4 percent of that came from the US.

He added that the US and China have no choice but to cooperate economically even if they wanted to buy and hire locally.

“It is important that both sides come to realize with cool heads that given the depth of our business cooperation, neither Chinese nor Americans can do without the other country,” Wang added.

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RC

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