China, US pledge to address lingering issues in bilateral trade relations: Vice-Minister of Commerce
Published: Feb 07, 2024 02:39 PM
The Ministry of Commerce Photo: VCG

The Ministry of Commerce Photo: VCG

China and US agreed to continue trade talks on Tuesday, said Wang Shouwen, China's Vice Commerce Minister, addressing concerns about US regulatory measures on Chinese semiconductors and cloud services, the fair treatment of Chinese companies in the US, and its restrictions on importing photovoltaic products.

During the meeting with Marisa Lago, US Under Secretary of Commerce, both parties expressed their willingness to earnestly implement the important consensus reached between the two heads of state at the San Francisco summit meeting, leverage the role of the China-US trade working group, expand cooperation, manage differences, and create favorable conditions for cooperation between the business communities of the two countries.

The discussions followed a series of talks between China and the US, with a focus on the preparations for the inaugural deputy ministerial-level meeting of the working group composed of deputy ministerial and bureau-level government officials from both China and US, while addressing key economic and trade issues of mutual concerns.

According to a statement released on the Chinese Ministry of Commerce's website, Wang emphasized that China-US trade cooperation is a stabilizing force in the bilateral relationship.

The recent meeting between China and the US should be viewed in the context of broader economic talks between the two countries. It is not an isolated event, but a continuation of the agreements reached between the leaders of China and the US during their meeting in San Francisco, Gao Lingyun, an expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences who closely follows China-US trade issues, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

The effectiveness of the meeting should be assessed based on future developments. It depends on whether there will be discussions among lower-level officials responsible for implementing the agreements, Gao Lingyun noted. "If talks are held between working groups from departments of both countries, we can look forward to specific problems being addressed and solved", Gao said.

This dialogue comes after the ministers of commerce from both nations agreed during their meeting in San Francisco on the sidelines of the APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting, which took place on November 16 last year , to hold the first deputy ministerial-level meeting by the trade working group in early 2024.

Several experts interviewed by the Global Times previously expressed pessimism about the US stance, indicating that instead of verbal promises, more concrete actions from the US side are needed.

China and the US have held several high-level meetings recently to discuss economic and trade relations between the two countries. According to the Ministry of Finance, third China-US Economic Working Group meeting was held on Monday and Tuesday in Beijing, with China's Finance Minister Lan Fo'an attending the meeting.