China files WTO challenge to United States $200B tariff plan

Hua Chunying spokeswoman of China’s Foreign Ministry gestures at a regular news conference in Beijing China Jan. 6 2016

Hua Chunying spokeswoman of China’s Foreign Ministry gestures at a regular news conference in Beijing China Jan. 6 2016

Following a retaliation by China, Trump has now threatened additional tariffs that total close to $500 billion, almost the entire amount of U.S. imports from China.

China has made the utmost efforts to avoid an escalation of trade frictions, Hua said, reiterating that China does not want a trade war but is not afraid of one.

The Trump administration on Monday also said it's filing a challenge at the WTO against China, the European Union, Canada, Mexico and Turkey for tariffs they imposed against the retaliation to earlier US tariffs on steel and aluminum.

The Chinese ministry called on the United States to stop violating the rules of worldwide trade. "All these developments in the worldwide trade arena make a credible dispute resolution mechanism such as the WTO all the more important", he said.

"Each time I came here, I have received more questions - a record number of questions", said Chinese Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Shouwen in a video statement about the latest China TPR, relative to the past ones.

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The ministry pointed out that the countermeasures were needed to protect not only the national interests but also the whole system of the global trade.

According to a Geneva trade official, Wang gave a detailed statement on Friday in response to numerous questions and concerns raised by delegations during either Wednesday's discussions or the submission of written questions beforehand.

"The Chinese tilapia industry is heavily dependent on the U.S. market". If China does not abide by the WTO rules, why is China fully fulfilling its WTO commitments? In the area of intellectual property rights, for instance, he suggested that questions over alleged forced technology transfers imposed on foreign companies wishing to do business in China are not government policy, but that "technical cooperation" results from voluntary deals in setting up these business arrangements. "Exporters to China such as Canada, Russia, Australia, and New Zealand, and exporters to the United States, such as Indonesia, Thailand, Mexico, and Brazil will be the winners as they can replace USA and Chinese seafood exports", de Jong wrote. The US official said that it was "unusual" how many concerns were put forward by members during the TPR. It could deploy measures against USA multinational companies operating in China such as consumer boycotts.

But China, the European Union and the others argue that's just an excuse. Else trade-distorting policies could destroy the global trading system, they warn.

"In this round of the US-China trade battle, there will be losses both for the US and China".

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