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2006-07-07 18:09

  President Bush believes that open markets and a level playing field are vital to job creation and economic growth. That is why the president rejects economic isolationism and why this administration is continuing to aggressively engage with China. Last week, along with Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, I led the president's Export Council to China to advance economic engagement, expand access for U.S. exports and address areas of trade concern.

  China is America's fastest-growing export market and our third-largest trading partner. Two-way trade exceeds $190 billion and over the last three years American exports to China increased 76%. But maintaining any relationship requires commitment and candor. We are working closely with the Chinese government to ensure that trade takes place through open markets and on a level playing field.

  Two months ago, the Bush administration hosted Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi in Washington for the Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade. The meetings produced positive breakthroughs that will expand opportunities for U.S. businesses. They also resolved seven potential World Trade Organization cases on high-technology products, agriculture and intellectual-property protection. These breakthroughs will expand opportunities for American workers and businesses.

  While pursuing cooperation with China, the Bush administration has not and will not hesitate to enforce America's trade laws. We filed the first-ever WTO enforcement action against China, for its discriminatory taxation of U.S. semiconductors. We imposed the first safeguard actions against Chinese textile and apparel imports, and roughly half of all U.S. antidumping cases filed in 2003 were against unfair Chinese imports. However, while some would prefer to litigate for litigation's sake, we are focused on achieving real results, in real time.

  Earlier this year, the Bush administration declined to accept two petitions that could have had a highly adverse impact on the Sino-U.S. trading relationship. We did so, in part, because of a belief that dialogue with the Chinese government is the best chance to produce results.

  U.S. support for free trade depends on a fair showing from its trading partners. China needs to act on trade barriers because economic distortions compromise long-term potential. Resolving these problems is in the interests of both countries. American companies have the right to expect that their trading partners will treat intellectual property theft as a crime. Estimates show the computer software piracy rate to exceed 90% in China —— costing U.S. industry $2.4 billion in 2002. Sound trading relationships depend on partnership —— not piracy.

  China must significantly reduce government micromanagement of the economy and introduce a far higher level of transparency, among many changes, before its transition to a market-driven economy can make meaningful progress. Market forces will not govern China's economy until the state improves the regulatory system and releases control over raw materials, the financial system, real estate, utilities and large enterprises within China.

  In northeastern China, the state still owns or controls a majority interest of roughly 90% of all enterprises. Not surprisingly, that region now supplies only 8% of China's output —— down from 14% in 1981. Government control over the means of production radically distorts economic conditions, undermines efficient capital usage and compromises long-term potential. In addition, it creates a tilted playing field.

  Last year, I advised China to lift its capital controls so that its entrepreneurs could experience greater financial freedom. Capital controls also compromise prosperity by misallocating a country's wealth. The unsound banking practices funded through the capital controls are equally troubling. China's state-run banks routinely extend loans to state-owned enterprises that are not expected to be repaid. As a result, there is a disturbing level of nonperforming loans in the portfolios of China's state-run banking system. Today, the big four state banks in China are, essentially, insolvent.

  Clearly, there is much work to be done to open China's economy and curb government subsidies. That is why we traveled to China with a clear message: The U.S. has opened its markets to you; now you must open your markets to us. The Bush administration is determined because we know that American workers excel on even terms and we recognize that open markets spur economic growth and create jobs in America.

  布什总统相信,开放的市场和公平的竞争环境对创造就业机会和经济增长极其重要。这就是为什么布什总统反对经济孤立主义以及本届政府积极保持与中国接触的原因。上星期,我率领美国总统出口委员会(President's Export Council)成员与劳工部长赵小兰(Elaine Chao)一起出访中国,争取促进经济交往,扩大美国对中国的出口,并提出与贸易有关的关注。


  两个月前,布什政府在华盛顿接待了前来参加美中商贸联合委员会(Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade)会议的中国副总理吴仪。会议为美国企业扩大商机带来了积极的突破。会议也解决了七项原本可能需要经世界贸易组织处理的有关高科技产品、农业和知识产权保护的争端。这些突破性进展将扩大美国工人和企业的机会。

  布什政府在与中国合作的同时,从来没有、今后也不会在贯彻实施美国贸易法方面有任何迟疑。我们向世界贸易组织首次提出对中国采取制裁行动的诉求, 因为它对美国的半导体产品征收歧视性关税。我们对中国的纺织品和服装也首次采取了防范行动。在2003年美国提出的所有反倾销案中,几乎一半是针对不公平的中国进口产品。虽然有些人宁可为诉讼而诉讼,但我们致力于迅速取得实质效果。







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