Liu Zhiqin, a senior fellow of the Chongyang Institute for Financial studies at Renmin University of China (RDCY), was interviewed by CGTN Global Business program, talking about the US’s decision of the tariffs on Chinese aluminum import.
Q: The aluminum export to the US just 400 million dollars per year. It’s not a big deal. What do you think about it?
A: When we’re talking about the trading between the America and China, especially on aluminum products, we have to look at the real story behind that. Because in early 1990s, American aluminum industry association had made up its outlines and guidelines for the developing aluminum industry in America. America should be a leading country on aluminum industry in the world, but nowadays, China is becoming the biggest exporter. We have moved and touched the cheese of the American aluminum industry. America wants to use the domestic regulation to govern international business. In fact, many American companies disagree to make such probe that against China’s aluminum products, because we import many aluminum products from America for our production use. This is bilateral trade relations. But the aluminum industry is a intensive products line, Mr. Trump is trying to create more jobs. However, the influences are not so big.
Q: Actually, China wants to work with the US, in term of addressing issues in the aluminum market. What does that mean?
A: We want America to know the facts and reality of the business inside. That means what we have exported to America, only less than 2% are used for military use of America. America use the excuse that aluminum import threatened the security of the military industry in America. However, it’s not the real reason. We have to tell them the real facts. Actually, we imported many aluminum products for the high-tech industry in China, such as automobile industry and shipping industry. But what we exported to America were only used for house building, windows and doors.
Q: So do you think that the outcome of the investigation would be coloured by political interests?
A: I think it would be influenced by political interests. Especially when he needs some actions and some distractions to persuade the voters in America to support this policy, he will continue doing this. However, it’s just a small cake, only less than 400 million dollars. I don’t think it will have such a great influence.