Xi’s comments follow the signing of the world’s largest free trade agreement, the Comprehensive Regional Economic Partnership, on Sunday by Beijing and 14 other Asian neighbors.
China’s RCEP appeals to other developing countries as it lowers barriers to trade in agricultural products, manufactures and components, which constitute the bulk of their exports. It says little about trade in services and access for businesses to operate in each other’s economies, which the United States and other developed countries want.
The Trump administration has cut off Chinese tech giant Huawei’s access to most US components and technologies for security reasons. Washington shut down Huawei and rival Chinese telecommunications equipment supplier ZTE from the US market. The White House is pressuring the Chinese owner of video service TikTok to sell its US operation, which US officials see as a security risk.
Xi vowed to reduce the tariffs but gave no details.
“We will further reduce tariffs and institutional costs, cultivate a number of innovation demonstration areas in promoting import trade, and expand imports of high-quality products and services from various countries,” did he declare.
China’s repeated promises to create trade zones and ease import restrictions spark complaints from the United States, Europe, Japan and other trading partners that Beijing is using isolated measures to avoid honoring the promises made when it joined the World Trade Organization in 2001. foreign companies to compete freely in its economy