Trade Negotiation Should Be On Equal Basis, China’s Wang Tells US’s Pompeo

According to a statement issued by the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has told the United States Secretary of State Michael Pompeo in a phone call that the only way to find a solution to the ongoing trade war between the two countries is to conduct negotiations on an equal footing.

According to a readout of the call posted on the Chinese ministry website, various words and actions of the US in recent times has harmed China’s interests, said Wang in the telephonic conversation. He added that those measures included containing normal business operations of Chinese companies by political means.

A one sentenced sentence statement acknowledging the phone call was issued by the US State Department.

“They discussed elements of the bilateral relationship, including US concerns about Iran,” said spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus.

According to the ministry readout, Wang urged “all parties to exercise restraint and act with caution” in Iran, and issued a warning against “long-arm jurisdiction” by the US.

The readout of the telephonic conversation also further mentioned Wang as saying that while resolving the economic and trade disputes through negotiations was acceptable to China, but the country wants to defend its justifiable interests and protect “basic norms of international relations”

The US also should follow the so called One China policy with respect to the status of Taiwan, Wang also told Pompeo.

The conversation between the two leaders assumes importance because just a few days ago, US president Donald Trump issued an executive order where in all American companies were barred from selling or using equipment or technology from foreign companies that are deemed to be a threat to national security. Following that order, the US Commerce Department put the Chinese tech giant Huawei and its 70 affiliate companies in its “entity List” which virtually banned the Chinese firm from doing any business in the US.

Those two moves had angered Chinese leadership as they felt that they were being pressurized by the US to agree to a wide-ranging trade deal.

Additionally, earlier this month, while increasing the tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods imported into the US from 10 per cent to 25 per cent, Trump also threatened to bring all of the exports from the second largest economy of the world to the US under tariffs.

Currently, the two countries are not scheduled to hold any more negotiations on trade.

(Adapted from StraitsTimes.com)

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