China fights back against U.S. accusations of blocking WTO technology deal

BEIJING Sun Nov 24, 2013 8:18am EST

Chinese Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng attends a news conference with European Union Trade Commissioner Karel de Gucht (not pictured) at the Chinese Ministry of Commerce in Beijing, June 21, 2013. REUTERS/China Daily

Chinese Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng attends a news conference with European Union Trade Commissioner Karel de Gucht (not pictured) at the Chinese Ministry of Commerce in Beijing, June 21, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/China Daily

Related Topics

BEIJING (Reuters) - Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng denounced the United States as "irresponsible" on Sunday after Washington accused China of jeopardizing a deal that aims to cut tariffs on technology products, saying Washington had disappointed participants in the talks.

U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said on Thursday that China's demands to exempt more than 100 products from a technology trade deal risked leading to a breakdown in the negotiations.

"It is irresponsible for the U.S. to discard the consensus that has been agreed by most of the countries only because the deal cannot meet its own requirement for several products," Gao said in a statement emailed to Reuters.

China, he said, had pushed forward negotiations to expand the Information Technology Agreement (ITA) and proven its willingness to improve its offer several times during the talks.

Gao said U.S. demands far exceeded what was acceptable to Chinese companies.

"The U.S. is unwilling to make any necessary concessions and has turned a blind eye to the big differences between Chinese and U.S. firms, ignoring the appeals by the Chinese side," he said.

He said due account should be taken of the different levels of development of the countries involved in the negotiations.

European Trade Commissioner Karel de Gucht last week said China's demands were the main outstanding issue in the talks.

The talks seek to expand a 16-year-old World Trade Organization agreement and update it for the Internet era, cutting the import cost of items like personal computers, laptops, telephones, fax machines, computer software and semi-conductors.

(Reporting by Aileen Wang; Editing by Ron Popeski)

FILED UNDER:
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (3)
Afrodo wrote:
Is this, The Fight At The Top Of The Pyramid !?

Nov 24, 2013 10:33am EST  --  Report as abuse
Ricbitel wrote:
I’ve been to one of these events before,,, We (the U.S.) usually demand “our way or the highway”. I HIGHLY doubt China was playing hardball against US.

Nov 24, 2013 9:46pm EST  --  Report as abuse
UauS wrote:
China needs to be contained, period! Chinese commies are buying outright everything all around the world. China is the biggest, sneaky and real threat to the Western world since the Soviets ceased to exist.

Nov 24, 2013 11:48pm EST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

Track China's Leaders