Trump to request possible probe of China trade practices

Trump to request possible probe of China trade practices

The president plans to sign an executive memorandum Monday afternoon, directing his top trade negotiator to determine whether to investigate China for harming intellectual property, innovation and technology, senior administration officials said in a conference call Saturday morning.

"If Trump wants China to do more in terms of sanctions, Washington has to make significant concessions, for example in regards to the deployment of the THAAD missile defence system, trade issues or the South China Sea", Lam said.

The Trump administration announced Saturday that it is planning to launch an investigation into Chinese intellectual-property violations that could result in severe trade penalties, an escalation that presents both opportunities and risks at a time when the United States needs China's help to contain the North Korean nuclear threat.

President Trump has previously chastised China for not doing enough about the hermit nation, however, an administration official said the move Monday is unrelated to North Korea.

Trump, now on a 17-day working summer vacation at his golf resort in New Jersey, is returning to the White House for a day on Monday to sign this executive order directing the US Trade Representative to probe the matter. -China trade ties and of resolving differences "through dialogue and consultation". While Trump officially withdrew the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, an Obama-era trade deal, and will begin talks next week to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, other planned trade measures have been slow to materialize. These limitations forced many foreign companies into joint ventures with Chinese entities, many of them state-owned, effectively a form of technology transfer. Rather than launching straight into a probe, USTR will merely consider whether to launch an investigation under Section 301 of the 1974 Trade Act. That effort passed by a 15-0 vote.

The official, who was speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that he doesn't believe this will lead to a period of conflict between the USA and China, adding, "this is simply business between two countries".

Mr Trump has suggested he would go easier on China if it were more forceful in getting North Korea to rein in its nuclear weapons programme.

"China is widely recognised as the biggest source of the problem", he said.

And then on Thursday, when speaking with reporters, Trump said in relation to North Korea, "if China helps us, I feel a lot differently toward trade".

Depending on the results, the U.S. could either seek remedies through the World Trade Organization or outside of it.

"If Americans continue to have their best technology and intellectual property stolen, or forcibly transferred offshore, the United States will find it hard to maintain its current technology-leadership position and to remain one of the world's most innovative economies".

The administration has been eyeing other moves to rebalance the U.S.

According to Politico, trade sanctions on China were not expected immediately after the investigation announcement, but could lead to a hike in tariffs on Chinese goods, a move that is likely to breach the World Trade Organization's rules.

"President Trump is committed to protect America's intellectual property and national security", the official said. That initiative sets forth a long-term plan for China's dominance in a wide variety of high-tech industries, including electric vehicles, advanced medical products and robotics. In this estimation, Washington is merely using North Korea to mount a military containment strategy around China, she said. Chinese leaders believe the U.S. sees its true rival as China, a mammoth economy, and not North Korea, one of the poorest countries on earth, Sun said.