Asia Minute: U.S. Chamber Says China Challenges Include Protectionist Policies

Mar 17, 2017

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Rex Tillerson is in the midst of his first trip to Asia as Secretary of State. His travels include Japan, South Korea and China—but one development he’ll face comes from Washington. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

 


The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has a problem with China…at least with how the Chinese government is supporting innovation in ten strategic sectors.

Two years ago, officials launched a campaign called “Made in China 2025”—targeting development areas from robotics and agricultural technology to rail equipment and computer chips.

The Chamber says China is laying the ground work for strategic success by stretching international law beyond the breaking point with government subsidies and support of Chinese firms over foreign companies.

These are the types of activities the World Trade Organization also tends to find objectionable.

China joined the WTO more than 15 years ago.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce just issued a report titled “Made in China 2025: Global Ambitions Built on Local Protections.”

In one example, China named “new energy vehicles” as a priority area—which led several foreign companies to build battery factories in China.

The Beijing government then issued a list of companies allowed to supply the domestic market—a list which included NO foreign firms.

Discussion points for Secretary of State Tillerson’s initial visit to China likely start with North Korea…but a list of bi-lateral issues definitely include trade and protectionism.