US, China strive to improve bilateral trade ties

Anh Huyen
Chia sẻ
(VOVWORLD) - US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo is on a 4-day visit to China from August 27-30. The visit is expected to ease the trade tensions and promote dialogue to soon normalize bilateral trade relations between the two countries. 

Gina Raimondo is the fourth high-ranking US official to visit China in three months following President Joe Biden's climate change envoy John Kerry, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

The visit comes as the US begins banning investments in sensitive technology sectors in China and intends to restrict exports of many semiconductors from October.

Agreement to set up a contact channel

During the talks with her Chinese counterpart Wang Wentao in Beijing on Monday, US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo affirmed that the stable relations between the two countries are "extremely important" because US-China trade contributes up to 700 billion USD to global trade. Raimondo emphasized that despite many disagreements and challenges, stable economic cooperation benefits both countries. Wang said he was ready to work with Washington to foster a more favorable policy environment and that  US-China relations matter to the rest of the world.

They expressed their optimism and agreed to establish new contact channels to address economic and trade issues, including a bilateral forum to discuss export control measures to minimize misunderstandings of each other's security policies and a working group to deal with commercial issues. Ms. Raimondo said that the US is investing heavily in infrastructure, manufacturing, and supply chains and is not intending to hinder China's economic progress.

A few weeks before the China visit of the US Commerce Secretary, the White House announced a ban on investments in sensitive technology sectors in China and planned to restrict exports of many semiconductors starting in October.

In return, China announced in July a fine of 1.5 million USD for the US appraisal firm Mintz Group, for allegedly illegally gathering statistics.

Before that, China forced the closure of Mintz Group’s office in Beijing after an unannounced inspection. The Chinese security agency also searched the offices and questioned employees of some US consulting firms such as Capvision and Bain, alleging infringing upon national security.

Paving the way for improving relations

US-China relations have fallen to the lowest level in decades, and US trade restrictions against China are among the most contentious issues in bilateral relations.

China's rise has challenged US dominance in the most advanced technology areas, including artificial intelligence, 5G, quantum information science, and semiconductors.

Since taking office, President Joe Biden has pursued an industrial strategy to diversify supply chains in areas such as clean energy, electric vehicles, and semiconductors. In order to reduce risks and avoid dependence on China, the US has restricted the export of advanced chips and chipmaking equipment to China. Washington has also put more than 1,000 Chinese companies and entities on a trade blacklist.

In response, China considers the US measures a full-fledged economic blockade. In retaliation, Beijing banned Chinese companies from buying memory chips from US maker Micron Technology, which has further increased tensions, among other disagreements.

Analysts say that although the two powers are always caught up in controversies ranging from trade and technology to regional security, both sides display goodwill to promote communication.

Raimondo's visit to China takes place prior to Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to the US scheduled in the next 3 months. Diplomacy is urgently needed and her visit is expected to pave the way for other bilateral meetings between senior leaders of the two countries.