China tells Pompeo US must stop 'misguided actions'

Irving Hamilton
October 11, 2018

In response, Beijing announced it would impose tariffs of 5 to 10 per cent on an additional US$60 billion of U.S. goods, including meat and liquefied natural gas, and cancelled a planned delegation visit to Washington.

"Recently, as the USA side has been constantly escalating trade friction toward China, it has also adopted a series of actions on the Taiwan issue that harm China's rights and interests, and has made groundless criticism of China's domestic and foreign policies", he said during a joint appearance with Pompeo.

He added: "We believe this has been a direct attack on our mutual trust, and has cast a shadow on China-US relations".

He met with senior Communist Party foreign affairs official Yang Jiechi, who recalled that Beijing has lodged official protests with the United States to express its "dissatisfaction" over a series of U.S. actions. China has backed United Nations sanctions on its Cold War-era ally, though it recently called for them to be eased. "We hope the U.S. and China will be on the same page". It's been a one-way street for 25 years.

"We have great concerns about the actions that China has taken, and I look forward to having the opportunity to discuss each of those today because this is an incredibly important relationship", the US' top diplomat said during a meeting in Beijing.

Some economists say a new round of tariffs would add to the existing duties on $200 billion of China trade, meaning all Chinese exports into the US would be taxed at the border.

"We require that the U.S. stop such misguided actions", he said, adding that the two countries should pursue cooperation "and not descend into conflict and confrontation".

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President Donald Trump on Tuesday repeated his threat to slap tariffs on an additional $267 billion (203 billion pounds) of Chinese imports if Beijing retaliates for the recent levies and other measures the United States has imposed in an escalating trade war between the economic giants.

Pompeo hit back, saying the U.S. has "great concerns about the actions that China has taken".

"I hope Secretary of State Pompeo's visit to China will play a positive role toward this goal", the Chinese foreign minister said.

In a statement released after Pompeo's meetings, the State Department said both sides agreed on the importance of a "constructive, results-oriented bilateral relationship".

"We are going to absolutely want to make sure that as part of any trade understanding we come to that currency has to be part of that".

Trump has frequently criticised China for his belief that Beijing is artificially weakening its currency to make Chinese exports more competitive, something he believes Beijing is doing to hurt the United States economy.

In August, he claimed that Beijing is a "currency manipulator."

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