China promotes free trade amid US trade war

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Xi Jinping paints China as a champion of globalization before the meeting with Trump at the next G20 meeting in Argentina.

Xi Jinping, during a meeting in Shanghai, promised to improve access to the Chinese market and lower tariffs on imports.

“Protectionism and unilateralism are rising. Multilateralism and the free trade system are under attack … China will not close its doors to the world, but will become ever more open”. Xi Jinping told on Monday at the beginning of a trade fair in Shanghai.

The event is aimed at bolstering access to China for foreign firms.

The speech precedes the meeting scheduled for the end of the month of the G20.

Xi said that China entered a new round of high-level consultations with the White House, but did not make any concession to meet American demands.

The Chinese leader has reiterated his promise to strengthen the laws protecting intellectual property, as well as opening up in the educational sector of the country, in the cultural and telecommunications sectors.

Some analysts are skeptical, like Roland Rajah, director of the international economics program at the Lowy Institute in Sydney.

The United States has repeatedly accused China of using unfair practices, including intellectual property theft, and has imposed tariffs worth about $ 250 billion on Chinese goods. China responded by raising the tariffs on American products for about 110 billion dollars.

Nations “should not just point fingers at others to gloss over their own problems”.

“With the rise of globalization, the practices of the law of the jungle and the winner who takes everything are over,” he said. “The Chinese economy is a sea, not a pond, storms can make a pond disappear, not a sea.”

Xi then promised an accelerated commercial negotiation with the European Union, Japan and Korea, adding that a new stock exchange dedicated to the hi-tech sector will soon be introduced in Shanghai.

Xi’s speech, however, has not reassured the Asian stock exchanges, which continued to lose after a terrible October. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 2.1%, while Shanghai Composite lost 1%.

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