China’s vice premier says no country can win trade war

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China’s Vice Premier, Liu He, on Tuesday said protectionist and unilateral approaches on trade would only deepen economic uncertainty as no country could emerge winner in a trade war.

“We believe that protectionist and unilateral approaches do not offer solutions to problems on trade.

“On the contrary, they will only bring about more economic uncertainty to the world,” Liu told an economic conference in Hamburg.

According to him, the history of economic development has proven time and again that raising tariffs will only lead to economic recession and no one ever emerged as a winner from a trade war.

“Our approach therefore is to seek a negotiated solution to the problems we have on the basis of equality and mutual respect,” he added.

The U.S. has levied additional duties of between 10 per cent and 25 per cent on 250 billion of Chinese goods this year as punishment for what it calls China’s unfair trade practices.

Trump is due to hold trade talks with Chinese President, Xi Jinping, on the side lines of a G-20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, this week.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump said it was “highly unlikely” that he would accept any request to hold off on the tariff increase, due to take effect on Jan. 1.

While China’s exports have been resilient so far, many economists expect the impact of the trade war with the U.S. to be felt in 2019, adding to China’s domestic economic concerns.

The Chinese government has set a target to expand the world’s second-biggest economy by around 6.5 per cent, this year.

However, growth has been slowing amid Beijing’s multi-year campaign to curb a corporate debt build-up and clamp-down on risky lending practices. (Reuters/NAN)

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