Source: Global Times Published: 2017-7-19
The China-US Comprehensive Economic Dialogue (CED) kicked off in Washington on Wednesday, the first focusing on economic and trade issues in a new format agreed on after a meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart, Donald Trump, in April. What are the important trade issues between China and the US? How will the dialogue influence US trade policies toward China and Sino-US relations? Global Times reporter Yang Chuchu interviewed two scholars on these issues.
Wang Yiwei, director of the Institute of International Affairs, Renmin University of China
After Trump came to power, he advocated economic nationalism and presented his "100-day action plan." Trump promised to label China a currency manipulator on the first day of his presidency, but later he realized that he should gain China`s support instead of going against it to achieve his goals.
Punitive tariff on Chinese goods could not help the US solve its trade deficit with China. Trade problems between the two countries should be solved through cooperation and structural adjustment. In addition, reviving the China-US Bilateral Investment Treaty will also help ease the Sino-US trade imbalance.
The two countries can promote regional cooperation. For example, California can cooperate with China`s provinces, such as Hebei and Jiangsu, for infrastructure construction and pollution control.
The China-US CED shows that the US wants to exert economic influence on China and China`s course of reform and opening-up. However, the dialogue shows not only US influence on China but also China`s impact on the US. The two countries influence each other, shape each other and depend on each other, which helps the two fulfill their tasks of economic structural reform.
A healthier and more stable development of the world economy can help US economic growth. Stirring up troubles with China will do no good to the realization of Trump`s economic goals. Holding the concept of mutual prosperity, respect and win-win cooperation, China and the US can enjoy a more beneficial relationship and promote their cooperation on global governance.
Li Haidong, professor at the Institute of International Relations, China Foreign Affairs University
Trade cooperation between China and the US is of vital importance for stable bilateral ties. The US should know Sino-US cooperation in trade will benefit both.
The Trump administration has taken a results-oriented policy toward China regarding trade. That means its trade policies toward China rely on solving specific trade issues with China.
The US should shoulder more responsibilities for bilateral trade friction. With the development of globalization, many countries have embraced openness. However, after Trump assumed the presidency, he has been antagonistic toward globalization and supported economic nationalism, which has harmed Sino-US economic cooperation and global economic development.
The economic and trade issues between China and the US are impossible to solve in a short time. China needs to maintain communication with the US for bilateral trade cooperation so that the Trump government will take a more positive attitude toward China.
The China-US CED was established by the leaders of the two countries, a high-level dialogue mechanism focusing on economic and trade issues. The establishment of the mechanism shows the two countries have attached high importance to strengthening bilateral economic cooperation and dealing with trade friction. The friction is largely caused by the US adjustment of its trade policies toward China.
The dialogue is expected to involve an evaluation of recent Sino-US economic and trade interaction, and provide a forum for suggestions and directions for the future.
The dialogue can offer a platform for the two sides to show their views on Sino-US trade problems and give an assessment of the bilateral policy, which can supply new thoughts for the two countries` future cooperation. In addition, the dialogue mechanism can help the US trade officials learn more about China`s views and policies on Sino-US trade relations, enhancing the efficiency of the bilateral trade exchanges.
It can be said that holding the China-US CED is conducive to the further and deeper development of Sino-US relations.
Wang Yiwei is a senior fellow of Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, Renmin University of China.