HAINAN, CHINA — At a key business forum, China’s president has promised to lower tariffs on vehicle imports and strengthen intellectual property rights. The pledges came as the Asian nation tried to defuse a trade spat with the U.S.
Speaking at the annual Boao Forum for Asia, Chinese President Xi Jinping said Tuesday his country was willing to further open up its economy to foreign investors.
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump has thanked President Xi for his statement to address American concerns on trade and tariff and lauded him for his “kind words on tariffs and automobile barriers”.
President Trump in his twit also appreciated President Xi’s ‘enlightenment on intellectual property and technology transfer. President Trump in his twit concluded, “We will make great progress together”.
President Xi pledged that China would “significantly broaden market access” to its banking, securities and insurance sectors and increase cooperation with foreign financial markets.
Addressing Western criticism of what business leaders perceived as unfair joint venture rules in President Xi announced his country would raise the foreign ownership limit in the automobile sector “as soon as possible.”
President Xi added that the world’s second-largest economy would aim to create a more attractive investment environment and strengthen intellectual property rights, the neglect of which had prompted the Trump administration to threaten punitive tariffs on a large number of Chinese products.
“This year, we will considerably reduce auto import tariffs and at the same time reduce import tariffs on some other products,” Xi promised at the forum in the southern province of Hainan.
Foreign business groups welcomed Xi’s commitment to reforms, including promises to strengthen legal deterrence on intellectual property violators, but said his speech fell short on specifics.
“Ultimately, US industry will be looking for the
Other highlights of China’s President Xi speech are as following:
— China will significantly lower the import tariffs for vehicles and reduce import tariffs for some other products this year. Xi said:”We will take the initiative to expand imports,” Xi said.
— China will work hard to import more products that are competitive and needed by the Chinese people; as China will also seek faster progress toward joining the WTO Government Procurement Agreement;
— President Xi stressed, “China does not seek trade surplus; we have a genuine desire to increase imports and achieve a greater balance of international payments under the current account.”
— China will adopt policies to promote high-standard liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment, and explore the opening of free trade ports with Chinese characteristics, Xi said.
— President Xi said China will strengthen protection of intellectual property rights. “Stronger IPR protection is the requirement of foreign enterprises, and even more so of Chinese enterprises,” he said.
He assured: “We encourage normal technological exchanges and cooperation between Chinese and foreign enterprises, and protect the lawful IPR owned by foreign enterprises in China.”