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China says trade war with United States disastrous

11 March 2018

Chinese Commerce Minister Zhong Shan said on Sunday that China will continue to restrict irrational outbound investment.

"A trade war will be catastrophic for China, the United States, and the rest of the world", he said.

"There is no victor in a trade war", Zhong said at a press conference in Beijing Sunday. China doesn't want a trade war, and will not start a trade war first.

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President Xi Jinping's top economic advisor, Liu He, held trade discussions with U.S. officials at the White House earlier this month but the meetings yielded few breakthroughs. The commerce minister also blamed the trade imbalance in part on controls over US high-tech exports to China.

US President Donald Trump has since announced tariffs on steel and aluminium imports, drawing threats of retaliation from China and other nations.

Trade imbalance between the two countries is structural, with China exporting more commodities to the Unites States while importing more services, Zhong said, adding that trade competitiveness is determined by industries. The figure for February fell slightly from the previous month to US$21 billion, according to the latest data from the customs administration.

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Liu He, a senior Chinese economic and financial official met with USA officials earlier this month and they have agreed that the two countries should settle their trade disputes by cooperation rather than confrontation.

"There is still much for us to do, one side can not call the shots, we need to work hard together", Zhong said.

"We are still in talks, and we are sure that both sides will keep talking for the next step", he said.

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China says trade war with United States disastrous