U.S. Commerce's Ross: more pressure needed for China to change trade, IP policies

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross testifies before a Senate Finance hearing on "Current and Proposed Tariff Actions Administered by the Department of Commerce" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., June 20, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Wednesday that President Donald Trump wants China to cut its trade barriers and protect U.S. intellectual property, but believes Beijing will not do so without increased pressure from the United States.

Speaking at a U.S. Senate Finance Committee hearing two days after Trump announced that he was prepared to add tariffs to an additional $400 billion worth of Chinese imports, Ross said years of talks with China over U.S. intellectual property concerns have failed to yield progress.

“The president feels and I agree that now is the time for action,” Ross said. “And unless than we make it more painful for them to continue those practices than to do otherwise, unless we put that kind of pressure on, it’s unlikely we will succeed.”

Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama