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US, China Stabilized Relations Over Past Year, Yellen says

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By Felix Tam
Bloomberg News

(Bloomberg News) The U.S. and China have put their bilateral relationship on a “more stable footing” over the past year, which has not meant ignoring differences or avoiding tough conversations, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told Chinese Premier Li Qiang on Sunday. bulletin news

Both countries have to responsibly manage the complex relationship, and to cooperate and show leadership in addressing urgent global challenges, Yellen told Li in Beijing following her visit to the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou.

“We can only make progress if we directly and openly communicate with one another,” Yellen said, according to a transcript of her remarks.

Earlier, Yellen and Chinese Vice Premier He Lifeng agreed to set in motion formal talks aimed at addressing what the U.S. and other countries see as China’s growing industrial overcapacity.

China wants the U.S. to view the issue of production capacity objectively from a market-oriented and global perspective, the official Xinhua News Agency cited Li as saying.

Since her arrival in Guangzhou on Thursday evening, Yellen has offered mostly criticism of the way Chinese leaders have managed their economy. She repeatedly called out Beijing for mistreating American and other foreign companies operating in China and for distorting global markets by subsidizing overproduction in certain sectors.

The development of China’s new energy industry will make important contributions to the global green and low-carbon transition, Li said, adding that China “sincerely hopes” that two countries can become partners.

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Notes from APS Radio News

China has been a member of the World Trade Organization since December of 2001.

According to reports, Ms. Yellen and other officials as well as commentators seem to be calling on China to increase domestic demand, for example by increasing wages and salaries and social spending.

They urge China to rely more on domestic spending, in order to lift it from economic doldrums.

In recent months, China’s level of exports has increased.

China’s manufacturers of EV (electreic vehicles) have succeeded in lowering the prices of those vehicles, relative to the prices of EVs sold by Tesla.

China has been known for exporting steel, for example.

US steel makers have complained that steel imported from China is about 20% less expensive.

For their part, a number of European countries have been working to bring about import tariffs to be imposed against China’s exports of EVs.

In recent months, China has been stimulating its manufacturing sector, which often relies on comparatively inexpensive loans from state-owned banks.

That policy came after property prices and the real estate sector has been depressed during the past year.

China maintains that the US is violating rules of the WTO by subsidizing it production of EV’s.

Elon Musk, the head of Tesla, has his own EV plant in Shanghai.

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