China confronts U.S. on trade claims

Feb. 3, 2010 at 7:35 AM

BEIJING, Feb. 3 (UPI) -- China took on the United States on trade issues even as it kept up its attacks against the U.S. administration's sale of arms to Taiwan.

Recalling U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke's reported warning last week that China's is protecting its domestic firms while setting up barriers to foreign investment, the official Xinhua news agency, in a lengthy article, said the U.S. official's charge was misleading and "totally contrary to the facts."

While Locke warned Beijing's policies could lead to U.S. companies losing interest in China, the article said it is the United States which, while embracing trade protectionism itself, "is trying to confuse black and white by accusing others."

The two countries are currently involved in a number of trade disputes ranging from the United States slapping anti-dumping, anti-subsidy tariffs on some Chinese imports to filing complaints with the World Trade Organization on Chinese curbs on exports of key raw materials.

Xinhua said a survey by the U.S.-China Business Council last October had shown the respondents were "upbeat" about China.

"Burdened by high unemployment and facing mid-term elections in November, some people in the U.S. are trying to shift public attention from thorny political and economic issues to other countries," the article said.

"However, such irresponsible moves will prove to be unhelpful, and China will not accept being a scapegoat."

In its continuing tirade against the $6.4 billion arms sales to Taiwan, China warned U.S. companies faced sanctions if they participated or got involved in the sale.

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