US trade accusations hide escalating protectionism

By Liu Zhun Source:Global Times Published: 2014-2-20 0:23:01

The Office of the US Trade Representative ranked China the leading physical market that sells fakes on February 12th. Its newly issued Notorious Market List for 2013, according to trade representative Michael Froman, revealed markets that allegedly jeopardized US trade and businesses by infringing intellectual property rights. Not only China but other countries in Europe and South America and even Canada are also on the list.

This is not the first time that the US has made such a list. It is also not the debut of Chinese markets and enterprises on it.

In 2011, both Chinese Internet giant Baidu and the biggest online shopping website Taobao were placed on the list for the same charge of infringing intellectual property rights.

The Chinese government has kept a firm stand against such criticisms for three years, telling the US government that its reports lack evidence and are "irresponsible and biased." According to the spokesman of the Chinese Ministry of Commerce, the US government should have conducted "an overall, objective and fair review of Chinese firms' efforts and progress in intellectual property rights protection." It's a technical issue to judge whether the US accusations are based on fully legitimate evidence.

Many believe Washington's accusation is a cover for trade protection. Inefficient management on this issue is a common problem in most developing countries, which are still dedicated to giving much of their priority to creating wealth instead of safeguarding intellectual property.

Growing to be the second largest economy, China became a miracle of development in 35 years. Its economic success is applauded around the globe, not only because it can inject vitality to the world economy, but also as it was achieved almost from scratch.

China's economic takeoff and development was mainly triggered and kept thanks to its massive market and labor force.

The overall quality of Chinese economic growth is still at a low level. China knows the risks, and has never receded from exploring a full and effective set of laws and regulations, which will support its economic system in a sustainable manner.

As the Chinese economy transforms, more and more companies are realizing honesty and innovation are key to long-term development. A mature market with a rule of law is forming in this country. It takes time, but it will be done.

Posted in: Observer

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