US secretary of state Mike Pompeo and China’s foreign minister Wang Yi  before their meeting at the 51st Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Singapore,  yesterday. Picture : Reuter/Pool
US secretary of state Mike Pompeo and China’s foreign minister Wang Yi before their meeting at the 51st Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Singapore, yesterday. Picture : Reuter/Pool

Co-operation the only way for US, China, says Wang

By Reuters Time of article published Aug 4, 2018

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China was willing to resolve differences with the US on an equal footing, the Chinese government’s top diplomat said after meeting US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, but said they did not address their trade war too specifically.
US President Donald Trump on Wednesday instructed his trade officials to look at increasing tariffs to 25% from 10% on $200billion (R2.6 trillion) in Chinese imports into the US.

Trump, who has accused China and others of exploiting the US in global trade, has demanded that Beijing make a host of concessions to avoid the new duties, which could be imposed in the weeks after a comment period closes on September 5.

China, however, shows no sign of bending to Washington’s pressure. Speaking to reporters after meeting Pompeo on the sidelines of a regional summit in Singapore, Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi said Pompeo told him he was “was willing to maintain constructive contact”.

“Co-operation is the only correct choice for the US and China,” said Wang. “Opposition can only bring dual loss and will hurt the peaceful and stable development of the world.

“We are willing to resolve the concerns of both sides via talks on the basis of an equal footing and mutual respect. He (Pompeo) was accommodating on this as a direction,” he said.

Wang, who is also China’s foreign minister, urged the US on Thursday to calm down and “carefully listen to the voices of US consumers”.

So far, the US has imposed duties on $34bn of imports from China as part of a first tranche of sanctions on $50bn of goods. It wants China to stop stealing US corporate secrets, abandon plans to boost its hi-tech industries at America’s expense and stop subsidising Chinese companies with cheap loans that enable them to compete unfairly.

China says the US is trying to stop the rise of a competitor and it has imposed its own tariffs on US goods. The rising tensions have weighed on stock and currency markets, with the Chinese yuan falling against the dollar. The two countries have not had formal talks on their trade dispute since early June. - Reuters

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