US trade war has no international support

Source:Global Times Published: 2018/9/26 21:52:24

In a joint statement signed in New York Tuesday, trade representatives from the US, EU and Japan criticized practices of "third countries" that lead to severe overcapacity and reiterated their concern with industrial subsidies, State-owned enterprises and forced technology transfer. It's widely believed the statement is targeting China. It needs to be pointed out that the content of the statement is nothing new. The three countries intended to show their solidarity by issuing the statement, but the reality is quite the opposite. The joint statement is far from becoming joint action and it's inconceivable that the EU and Japan would follow the US in its trade war with China.

Both Europe and Japan are supporters of free trade. They have dissatisfaction with China in trade, but US unilateralism and protectionism pose long-term threats against them. It's hard to say with which country they have a bigger difference: the US or China.

On the same day, Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the EU also signed a joint statement, agreeing to create a new payment mechanism to allow countries to transact with Iran while avoiding US sanctions. Not long ago, China and the EU established a joint working group on WTO reform, chaired at vice-ministerial level, which demonstrated the two sides' practical cooperation to safeguard the multilateral trading system. The fifth China-Japan-the Republic of Korea FTA Seminar was held in Beijing on September 20.

The world is a complicated system of intricate interests and it is impossible to separate them into two confrontational camps. Both the EU and Japan trade with China. China is the largest trading partner of about 120 countries and regions. It's unrealistic for the US to hope it can turn the whole world against China.

The speech US President Donald Trump delivered at the UN General Assembly has drawn worldwide negative reactions. Uncle Sam and its America First doctrine have hit a new low moral ground and the main diplomatic tool is intimidation. The China-US trade war has reached a stalemate. Washington launched an offensive against China, but failed to achieve its desired results. The Western world generally has maintained a neutral attitude, and the US has not found a position of advantage.  

The trade war broke out at a time when the US had an upbeat economy and the Chinese market kept expanding. US economic prosperity is a result of temporary incentives such as tax cuts while the expansion of the Chinese market is driven by the huge consumption potential of the population. Therefore, China's economy is more sustainable. Should the trade war stalemate continue, China will have more room for maneuver.

As long as China keeps upholding its opening-up, foreign enterprises, including many US ones, will continue participating in the development of the China market. China should continue cooperating with the Western world and the US on climate change, anti-terrorism, nuclear nonproliferation, global poverty and stabilizing the financial situation. As long as China keeps its development momentum, the US is doomed to lose the trade war. 

Posted in: EDITORIAL

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