US Trade Representative is seen keeping pressure on China | International Trade News

The USTR’s annual report says it plans to continue to challenge countries that impose trade barriers and other impediments.

The U.S. government vows to continue to fight what it sees as significant trade barriers hurting U.S. businesses and farmers, and has named China the “world’s first offender” by creating excess capacity in several sectors.

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said its annual report on the issue showed “significant obstacles that present major policy challenges with implications for U.S. future growth opportunities and the fairness of the global economy.” .

He said he would engage with foreign governments on a variety of issues that threaten U.S. exporters, including digital policies, agricultural trade barriers and technical barriers.

He also pledged to fight Chinese subsidies that have created excess capacity in the steel, aluminum and solar energy sectors, and which could soon affect other industries.

The report makes it clear that U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai plans to pursue a hardline approach to foreign trade practices that hinder U.S. export growth, even as she promised to work much more cooperatively with U.S. allies.

Katherine Tai plans to pursue an uncompromising approach [File: Bill O’Leary/The Washington Post/Bloomberg]

U.S. trading partners look forward to meeting Tai and understanding how the Biden administration will change its trade policies after four years of disruptive tariffs imposed by former President Donald Trump’s administration.

The 570-page National Trade Estimates report released Wednesday showed that Washington will continue to challenge China and other countries that impose trade barriers or other regulatory hurdles, and limit access for American companies.

“Main Offender”

“China’s state-run approach to economics and trade makes it the world’s biggest offender in non-economic capacity building, as evidenced by serious and persistent excess capacity situations in several industries, including steel. , aluminum and solar energy, among others,” the USTR said in a statement,

He said Beijing was “on track to create significant excess capacity in other industries” by “distributing hundreds of billions of dollars” to support Chinese companies under its Made in China 2025 industrial plan and by obliging them to achieve predefined targets for national and international markets. global market share.

The USTR said it would continue its bilateral and multilateral efforts to combat these “harmful trade practices”.

He also raised concerns about data restrictions imposed by India, China, Korea, Vietnam and Turkey; software requirements in Russia; Indonesian tariffs on digital products; local content requirements in many countries and discriminatory tax measures in Austria, India, Italy, Spain, Turkey and Great Britain.

He said he would continue to engage foreign governments on policies that made it difficult to export American digital products and services and undermined the ability of American companies to transfer data across borders.

The report also cited lingering agricultural concerns, including “non-science-based regulatory measures, opaque approval processes for agricultural biotechnology products, burdensome licensing and certification requirements for importation and restrictions on the ability of US producers to use the common names of the products they manufacture and export.