US Ambassador Says That Washington and Beijing Are Still Very Far Apart when it comes To Trade

The United States, led by President Donald Trump, wants Beijing to issue a timetable on how it will allow American exports to flow freely in the Chinese market that comprises of over 1.2 billion people. This comes at a time when the two economic superpowers are still very far apart when it comes to reaching a compromise on the trade frictions that have been there for months now. This was according to a press statement released on Tuesday by Terry Branstad, the American Ambassador in Beijing. Both the United States and China have proposed tariffs worth tens of billions of dollars in the last few weeks. This has fanned fears of a full-blown commerce war that could hurt the supply chains that balance global trade. International trade experts have said that such a move would only serve to dent business plans by investors in both countries.

A delegation from Washington led by the Secretary of the Treasury, Stephen Mnuchin, presented a list of demands to the Chinese government. The demands were issued earlier this month and required China to tackle allegations of international trade violations and intellectual property theft. According to Washington, China had been perpetuating unfair trading policies to the disadvantage of the United States for the last couple of years. The two nations failed to build consensus on the long list of demands that had been tabled by the United States government. Consequently, delegations from both countries decided to resume the talks afresh in Washington DC.

Ambassador Branstad, who also attended the meeting said that the delegation from China, appeared to be taken back by the list’s significance to trade. Branstad noted that the Chinese had demanded to see the specifics and evidence of the allegations levelled against them. The ambassador noted that the US gave them all the particulars regarding the issues raised on international trade malpractices. He added that the Chinese could not come out and say that they are not aware of what the US government is demanding. Branstad noted that the two economic powerhouses were still very far apart since the Chinese had not fulfilled their promise of opening up their financial and insurance services area. Branstad added that Beijing had failed to reduce its tariffs on motor vehicle imports. He said at a conference in Tokyo that the Chinese had made very many promises that they have not yet fulfilled and the US wants to see a timetable of how the demands will be met.