US Begins Investigation Into China Commerce Practices - Trade Representative

US Begins Investigation Into China Commerce Practices - Trade Representative”

The newspaper said that investigating China's infringements on intellectual property rights, the USA will correct a trade imbalance and at the same time, intensify pressure on China to cooperate with the United States in connection with U.S. policies against North Korea.

Trump said the U.S. would no longer tolerate Beijing's "theft" of U.S. industrial secrets, long a concern of major foreign corporations seeking a share of the huge Chinese market.

Lighthizer's decision to officially launch the investigation after collecting opinions from various circles signaled that a trade war began between the USA and China on a full scale.

"After consulting with stakeholders and other government agencies, I have determined that these critical issues merit a thorough investigation", Lighthizer said.

Beijing last week fired back at Mr Trump's move, warning that "everybody will lose" in the event of a trade war between the world's two largest economies. "We hope that the relevant persons can stop perceive an issue of the 21 century with the zero-sum mentality of the 19th or 20th century". "If a trade war occurs, both sides will be losers", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying pointed out.

But the country has rarely used the trade tool since the World Trade Organisation began operations in 1995.

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President Trump warned China of a trade war, saying that he would designate China as a currency manipulator and impose tariffs Chinese imports during the election process a year ago.

Lighthizer will first need to reach a preliminary finding of unfair practices by China before opening a formal investigation, which could take as much as a year, administration officials said. He has accused the communist nation of cheating the USA economy out of "hundreds of billions of dollars in trade". He recommended pursuing a trade investigation of Beijing's technology policies and anti-dumping action over Chinese exports of steel and aluminum. But, so far, the U.S. has not imposed heavier trade measures on Chinese goods.

China strongly resisted the US Trade Representative's investigation into China's infringements on intellectual property rights.

China said it would halt iron, iron ore and seafood imports from North Korea starting on Tuesday, in accordance with new United Nations sanctions that Beijing voted to approve.

According to Washington, this can mean surrendering technological know-how to Chinese partners.

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