US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen speaks during a press conference at the US Embassy in Beijing, China, 09 July 2023. EFE-EPA/MARK R. CRISTINO

China urges concrete US response to sanctions concerns

Beijing, July 10 (EFE).- China deems the visit of United States Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to Beijing as “constructive” but insists that Washington must take “concrete measures” to address its concerns regarding sanctions on Chinese companies.

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen gestures as she leaves a press conference at the US Embassy in Beijing, China, 09 July 2023. EFE-EPA/MARK R. CRISTINO

According to a Chinese finance ministry statement on Monday, the meetings with Yellen during her four-day trip were frank and constructive.

However, Beijing expected Washington to adopt a pragmatic and rational approach and respond to China’s concerns about the sanctions and restrictions.

The ministry criticized the US over sanctions and restrictive measures against China, claiming that the measures have infringed upon the legitimate interests and rights of Chinese companies.

The ministry’s statement said that Chinese officials, in their meetings with Yellen, reiterated its concerns, including the removal of additional tariffs, ceasing the suppression of Chinese companies, fair treatment of bilateral investment, refraining from imposing export controls, and lifting the import ban on products from the Xinjiang region.

To foster a “healthy” bilateral economic relationship, both sides must respect each other’s legitimate rights and interests, the statement said.

It emphasized that healthy competition should follow the principles of the market economy and the rules of the World Trade Organization.

China affirmed its commitment to openness and the creation of a law-based business environment.

According to the statement China believed that the differences between the two countries should not cause them to drift apart but should instead serve as a driving force for strengthening exchanges and dialogue.

“China’s development is an opportunity, not a challenge, for the United States,” the statement said.

The ministry said that seeking consensus and strengthening cooperation was the right choice for both countries.

The meetings with Yellen demonstrated China’s willingness to cooperate in addressing global challenges such as global macroeconomic and financial stability, climate change, and debt issues, the statement added.

Yellen’s visit aimed to improve communication between the two countries, particularly in the economic field. However, both sides acknowledged that significant differences still exist.

During her visit, Yellen met with top officials in China’s economic policy, including Prime Minister Li Qiang, the new head of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in the central bank, Pan Gongsheng, Finance Minister Liu Kun, and Vice Premier He Lifeng.

Yellen insisted that decoupling the world’s two largest economies would be disastrous for both countries and destabilizing for the world.

However, she also voiced concerns about coercive actions against US companies and called for healthy competition based on rules.

The negotiations addressed the restrictions imposed by the US last year on the export of semiconductors and US-made materials, a measure aimed at limiting Beijing’s access to components crucial for supercomputers and advanced military systems.

Beijing responded with limiting the export of gallium and germanium, essential metals for semiconductor manufacturing, further fueling trade and technological tensions between the two countries.

Yellen’s visit follows Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s visit in June, which aimed to reduce tensions and prevent escalating competition between the two powers from evolving into an open conflict. EFE