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Americans' view of China at lowest level since 2012, poll says

By Nicholas Sakelaris
Americans' view of China at lowest level since 2012, poll says
U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping review Chinese soldiers during a ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, on November 9, 2017. File Photo by Roman Pilipey/EPA-EFE

March 11 (UPI) -- Americans' view of China has fallen to its lowest level in years, a new survey showed Monday.

The Gallup poll found found 41 percent expressed a favorable view of China -- down 12 percent from last year. Forty-six percent said China's economic power is a "critical threat" to the United States.

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Gallup hasn't recorded such a low favorability rating for China since 2012.

The low marks reflect ongoing tensions between the United States and China over trade issues and tariffs imposed by both governments. Negotiators are hopeful to reach a new agreement by the end of the month.

The U.S. trade deficit with China is $419 billion.

Another country that's dealt with negative perception recently, Saudi Arabia, is also viewed poorly by most Americans. Just 29 percent in the poll said they have a favorable view of Saudi Arabia, the lowest since 2002 in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, which were carried out by some Saudi nationals.

The death of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi and the war in Yemen most likely have some impact on the Persian Gulf nation's present perception. There's an ongoing investigation to see whether the Saudi royal family ordered Khashoggi's death at the Saudi consulate last October.

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When asked which country people view the most favorably, 92 percent said Canada and more than 80 percent said Britain. Japan, Germany and France were also popular picks. Nations like North Korea, Syria, Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan all received low approval ratings.

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