The U.S.-China Trade Dispute: What Are the Possible Options Going Forward After the Missed Opportunity of May?

June 10, 2019

China has been a rapidly growing economy for several decades. The challenges for the United States and many other trading partners is that China has moved away from a path of adopting market economy principles and has instead reverted to a state-directed economic model – a model not adequately addressed by current WTO rules with the result that there are longstanding grievances for the U.S. and other trading partners that are not addressable within the WTO, at least at the present time.

The challenges that China's rise presents to the United States are real, including for trade. Under President Trump, trade has become the most prominent aspect of the U.S.-China relationship.  Over the past year, in consequence of the Section 301 investigation determination, the U.S. has imposed, in a series of actions, additional ad valorem duties on certain products from China.  In response, China has imposed its own additional duties on imports of U.S. products. Thus, the world's two largest economies have been engaged in a tit-for-tat dispute that has involved tariffs up to 25% on a total of $360 billion of goods. The U.S. and China have tried to resolve their differences through negotiations but with no success so far. In May 2019, the talks broke down completely after the U.S. believed that China backtracked on commitments it had made in the ongoing negotiations. It is believed by some that the U.S.-China trade dispute has caused the bilateral relationship to change course, likely going beyond the present U.S. administration before a correction is possible. Moreover, it is conceivable that the present trade dispute has intensified the tension and mistrust between the two nations, making miscalculations in trade and non-trade areas down the road more possible.

This article reviews the views and priorities of the U.S. and China underlying the ongoing trade dispute and the possible options available to them for resolving the dispute.

I. U.S. Trade Actions Regarding China

Since August 2017, the U.S. has attempted to address various longstanding and chronic trade issues concerning actions and policies of China. The following is a chronology:

August 2017

The U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) initiated a Section 301 investigation concerning acts, policies, and practices of the Government of China related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation.[1]

USTR's 2019 Trade Policy Agenda summarized the reasons for the 301 investigation:

Technology and intellectual property play a vital role in the U.S. economy – supporting some 45.5 million American jobs and accounting for over 38 percent of U.S. GDP and 52 percent of U.S. exports. In addition, China's policies effectively deprived U.S. companies of the full value of their intellectual property and technology, and inhibited U.S. companies from fairly competing in China's large market. Theft of U.S. intellectual property was also threatening American companies' technological competitive edge in global markets by denying fair returns for American intellectual property investment and discouraging reinvestment in future innovations. Once again, the multilateral trading system offered no practical solution for the United States. Many of the worst actions undertaken by China – such as the numerous informal methods of pressuring U.S. companies to share their technology with Chinese partners – were not captured by China's obligations at the WTO."[2]

March 2018

USTR issued a report of its findings in the 301 investigation.[3] At the same time, the U.S. initiated a WTO dispute on China's measures regarding the licensing of intellectual property rights.[4] Regarding the other issues, the U.S. proceeded bilaterally based on the Administration's view that the issues were not covered by existing WTO agreements.

April 2018

USTR determined that such acts, policies, and practices of China related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation were unreasonable or discriminatory and burdened or restricted U.S. commerce.[5]

Based on the evidence in the Section 301 report:

USTR determined that China had adopted actionable policies and practices (1) requiring or pressuring U.S. companies to transfer technology to Chinese entities through joint venture requirements and other foreign ownership restrictions, administrative reviews, and licensing procedures, (2) using its technology regulations to force U.S. companies to license their technologies on non-market terms that favor Chinese recipients, (3) generating technology transfer from U.S. companies by directing or facilitating systematic investment in, and acquisition of, these U.S. companies and assets, and (4) stealing sensitive commercial information and trade secrets of American companies through unauthorized intrusions into their computer networks.[6]

May 2018

In May 2018, the U.S. began discussions with China on bilateral economic issues, including the policies that were the subject of the 301 investigation. The U.S. and China met numerous times thereafter, at which the U.S. presented "detailed evidence of the problems created by China's unfair practices."[7] The U.S. and China also discussed specific reforms to improve their trading relationship, but China failed to respond in a manner that the U.S. felt would actually address the long running problems. The U.S. therefore took action to impose tariffs as permitted under Section 301.

July 2018 / August 2018

As a result of the 301 determination, in a series of actions, the U.S. imposed additional ad valorem duties on products from China classified in certain enumerated subheadings of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) amounting to approximately $50 billion of Chinese imports.

  • July 6, 2018: Tranche 1-- covers 818 tariff subheadings, with an approximate annual trade value of $34 billion.[8]
  • August 23, 2018: Tranche 2 -- covers 279 tariff subheadings, with an approximate annual trade value of $16 billion.[9]

September 2018

Following retaliation by China on $50 billion of U.S. exports to China (in comparable levels to the U.S. actions in July and August), USTR imposed additional tariffs on $200 billion of U.S. imports from China. They were initially set at 10 percent, but would increase to 25 percent on January 1, 2019.

  • September 24, 2018: Tranche 3 -- covers 5,733 tariff subheadings, with an approximate annual trade value of $200 billion.[10]

USTR explained why the additional Tranche 3 duties were imposed:

China made clear – both in public statements and in government-to-government communications – that it would not change the unfair policies identified in USTR's Section 301 investigation. Indeed, China denied there were problems with respect to its policies involving technology transfer and intellectual property. In fact, China responded to the U.S. action by increasing duties on certain U.S. exports to China – an obvious attempt to cause further harm to the U.S. economy. These actions demonstrated that USTR's initial tariff action was no longer appropriate to obtain the elimination of China's unfair trade acts, policies, and practices. In addition, the burden or restriction on United States commerce of these acts, policies, and practices continued to increase."[11]

China's Response

In September 2018, China again responded in kind to the U.S. actions with its own additional duties on imports of U.S. products.[12] Because U.S. exports to China ($130 billion in 2018) are far smaller than U.S. imports from China ($540 billion in 2018), China's retaliatory tariffs in September were on $60 billion of U.S. exports (for a total of $110 billion out of roughly $130 billion in total U.S. exports).

December 2018

Following a meeting between President Xi of China and President Trump at the G-20 meeting in Buenos Aires, the leaders agreed to immediately begin negotiations on structural changes with respect to forced technology transfer, intellectual property protection, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and cyber theft, services and agriculture. Both parties agreed to seek an agreement within the next 90 days (i.e., by March 1). The statement issued by the White House stated:

The U.S. agreed that on January 1, 2019, the tariffs on $200 billion worth of product would remain at the 10% rate, and not increase to 25%. China agreed to purchase a substantial, amount of agricultural, energy, industrial, and other product from the United States to reduce the trade imbalance.

The U.S. and China agreed to begin negotiations on structural changes with respect to forced technology transfer, intellectual property protection, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and cyber theft, services and agriculture.

Both parties agreed to seek to complete the talks within 90 days. The U.S. said that if no agreement was reached by that time it would increase the tariffs from 10% to 25%.[13]

February 2019

After December 1, 2018, the U.S. and China engaged in multiple rounds of negotiations in January and February 2019. In light of progress in those discussions, on February 24, 2019, the President directed USTR to postpone the increase in tariffs scheduled for March 2, 2019 until further notice.[14]

May 2019

The U.S. and China continued to engage in additional rounds of negotiation, including meetings in March, April, and May of 2019.

However, before the last scheduled round in early May, China retreated from specific commitments to which it had agreed in earlier rounds.

According to news reports, China made extensive edits to a draft trade agreement of nearly 150-pages. China reportedly crossed out commitments it had made to change its laws to address core U.S. demands concerning such subjects as intellectual property, forced technology transfers, competition policy, financial services, and currency manipulation.[15] One press report out of Japan indicated that the heavily marked up draft was nearly one-third smaller than the text the parties had been working on (105 pages vs. 150). The Japanese article suggested that President Xi had not been able to get support from other Chinese leaders on the draft hence leading to the dramatic shift in position by China.[16] The article notes that Chinese opposition to the draft agreement stemmed in part from historical resentment at "unequal treaties" with western powers dating from the 19th century.

Voices within the Chinese Communist Party, growing louder day by day, were insisting that "an unequal treaty that codifies meddling in our domestic affairs into law is unacceptable."

***

Whether the proposed deal between the U.S. and China really qualified as an "unequal treaty" is debatable, but regardless, it cut to the communist government's heart.  It would forbid forced technology transfers by a variety of both public and private means, theft of foreign technology or intellectual property, subsidies to state-owned enterprises and export subsidies given to all companies.

It is easy to understand the argument that the legal measures demanded by Washington were an unacceptable form of interference that violated China's principles.[17]
As a result of China's action and because of the lack of further progress in talks with China, the President directed USTR to increase the rate of additional duty for products in Tranche 3 from 10 percent to 25 percent, effective May 10, 2019.[18]

The U.S. also proposed a further action in the form of an additional ad valorem duty of up to 25 percent on products of China covered in a list of 3,805 full and partial tariff subheadings having an approximate annual trade value of $300 billion.[19] The proposed product list would cover essentially all products not currently covered by previous actions. The proposed product list would exclude "pharmaceuticals, certain pharmaceutical inputs, select medical goods, rare earth materials, and critical minerals."[20]

The U.S. has stated that it intends to continue further discussions with China.[21]

In response to the additional U.S. tariffs, China announced it would increase tariffs on $60 billion of U.S. goods, beginning June 1.[22]

In May, the U.S. also took actions affecting the Chinese company Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd, the largest telecommunications equipment producer in the world. On May 15, 2019, President Trump signed Executive Order 13873.[23] On May 16, 2019, the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) of the U.S. Department of Commerce added Huawei and its affiliates to its Entity List. BIS took this action because it determined that Huawei is engaged in activities contrary to U.S. national security or foreign policy interest.[24]

China has also taken other actions that have been interpreted as responses to the U.S. trade actions, such as selling off U.S. Treasuries[25] and threatening restrictions on access to rare earth minerals,[26] creating an unreliable entities list,[27] and starting an investigation on Federal Express claiming harm to Chinese companies by failing to deliver materials as promised (Huawei related).[28]

June 2019

On June 2, 2019, China issued a "white paper"[29] refuting U.S. claims that it had backtracked on commitments in the negotiations, and that, rather, it was the U.S. that had backtracked and caused the discussions to break down.[30] China claimed that the U.S. backtracked in three instances: (1) when the Section 301 report "falsely accus[ed] China of 'IP theft' and 'forced technology' and subsequently announced an additional tariff of 25 percent on US$50 billion of Chinese exports to the US"; (2) when the U.S. "imposed additional tariffs of 25 percent on Chinese exports worth US%50 billion, and additional tariffs of 10 percent on US$200 billion of Chinese exports" after having agreed to suspend such tariffs while negotiations continued; and (3) when the U.S. increased the tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent after "the two countries had agreed on most of the issues."[31]

On June 3, 2019, the U.S. responded to China's white paper, stating that it was "disappointed" that the Chinese were pursuing a "blame game misrepresenting the nature and history of trade negotiations between the two countries."[32]  The U.S. statement summarized the U.S. position:

Following months of hard work and candid and constructive discussions, the parties had reached agreement on a number of important matters.  In wrapping up the final important issues, however, the Chinese moved away from previously agreed-upon provisions.  In response to this Chinese backtracking, the United States moved forward with the previously-announced rate increase on Chinese imports and announced tariffs on additional Chinese imports.

It is important to note that the impetus for the discussions was China's long history of unfair trade practices.  Our negotiating positions have been consistent throughout these talks, and China back-pedaled on important elements of what the parties had agreed to.  One such position was the need for enforceability, a position necessitated by China's history of making commitments that it fails to keep.  But our insistence on detailed and enforceable commitments from the Chinese in no way constitutes a threat to Chinese sovereignty.[33]

On June 8, 2019, U.S. Treasury Secretary Mnuchin indicated that the U.S. and China were unlikely to make progress in trade discussions prior to the G-20 meeting in Japan in late June, where President Trump and President Xi are expected to meet.[34]

II. China's Policies Under President Xi

The top priorities of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), China's ruling party since 1949, are political stability and economic prosperity.  After President Xi Jinping took office in 2012, he made it his priority to strengthen the CCP and its control of the nation. To achieve this goal, the Xi administration has launched several signature programs, including the anti-corruption campaign and the restructuring of the military and the security forces. During this process, President Xi has successfully consolidated power and made himself the most powerful Chinese leader in decades.

Like any other government, the Xi administration is expected to deliver sustained economic growth and raise the standards of living for its people. Decades of unprecedented growth started because of the economic liberalization under Deng Xiaoping's reform and opening up. Growth was later boosted by China's integration into the world trading system in 2001. Reliance on investment and exports, exacerbated during the Great Recession, however, has led to China's debt problem and industrial excess capacity. To avoid the middle income trap, China also needs to invest in infrastructure, human capital, and innovation to raise its productivity.

China's supply-side structural reform and the financial de-risking campaign have been designed to address the debt problem and excess capacity. The need to raise productivity has led to a technology strategy with Chinese characteristics. This strategy focuses on self-reliance with advanced technologies, i.e., reducing dependence on foreign technologies through indigenous innovation. It also features acquisition of foreign technologies through domestic channels, including joint ventures, as well as overseas mergers and acquisitions. In addition, China's state-owned enterprise (SOE) policy serves both political and economic purposes.  Chinese SOEs dominate strategic sectors such as energy, information and communications technology (ICT), and finance, and, hence, are important tools for controlling the allocation of resources. SOEs are also crucial for fulfilling economic objectives such as investment promotion and innovation.

Under President Xi, China has also relied on foreign policy to seek stronger regional and global influence in the economic realm, as evidenced by the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The BRI was launched to finance and build infrastructure projects in Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. Chinese companies, SOEs in particular, tap into the construction markets and help China secure natural resources through these projects. China is also striving to strengthen or foster strategic alliances with its BRI partners, including Pakistan and Central and Eastern European countries.  

III.   Increasing Competitive Tensions

China and the United States together account for 40% of the world's GDP and manufacturing output.[35] The Chinese economy is still growing at above 6%, while transitioning from manufacturing and investment towards services and consumption. The U.S. economy is highly sophisticated and diversified in services, finance, and consumption. The United States is China's second largest trading partner and a source of investment and technology for China. The United States accounted for 19.2% of China's total exports and 7.3% of its total imports in 2018 and 1.9% of its total foreign direct investment in 2017.[36] China also depends on the United States for the supply of certain "core" technologies such as semiconductor and advanced instrumentation and machinery.

In addition, it is estimated that two thirds of China's over $3 trillion of foreign exchange reserve are denominated in U.S. dollars. China also holds over $1 trillion, or 5%, of U.S. treasury bonds. Like other countries, China chose the U.S. dollar as its primary reserve currency and U.S. treasuries as an investment instrument because of their low risk and steady returns.  Given these economic ties, it is in China's interests to maintain a stable relationship with the United States to secure a stable export market, a source of investment and technology, and economic stability.

On the competitive side, the Chinese economy is now close to two-thirds of the size of the U.S. economy based on nominal GDP. It is estimated by some that China will surpass the United States to become the world's largest economy within a decade. China is also attempting to move up the global value chain to remain competitive in the global economy. The Xi administration has been aggressive with the use of industrial, technology, and SOE policies to make Chinese firms more competitive. Moreover, global economic governance has become crucial following decades of integration. For example, the multilateral trading system, initially set up for regulating trade at the border, is increasingly reaching behind the border to regulate domestic issues such as standards. China under President Xi is well aware of this and has been actively pursuing influence in multilateral and regional institutions.

All of these aspects place China in direct competition with the existing leader, the United States. Furthermore, different political systems, Taiwan, and China's military ambitions only further discourage mutual trust. Given these, China's interest is to avoid direct confrontation with the United States wherever possible, while investing in alternative partnerships such as that with the European Union to diversify its economic ties.

IV.   Possible Outcomes to the U.S.-China Trade Dispute

As reviewed above, the U.S.-China trade dispute reached an impasse in May 2019 when China backtracked on commitments in a draft agreement and the U.S. imposed increased duties on $200 billion of Chinese goods. Since then, the two countries have engaged in verbal sparring but no reported substantive discussions.

In addition to retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods, China has actively responded to the U.S. actions with fiscal and monetary stimulus. As a result, China's key economic indicators, including industrial output and retail sales, have held up well to this point. The uncertainty raised by the trade dispute, however, will eventually take a toll on China's economy. The International Monetary Fund has estimated that the ongoing trade dispute could cost China 1.5% of GDP.

It would be in the interest of both China and the U.S. to de-escalate this dispute and restore the relationship towards one characterized by more cooperation. For China, a favorable outcome would likely include (1) removal of all the U.S.' additional Section 301 tariffs, (2) continued access to U.S. technology, and (3) renewed bilateral dialogues to address long-term, structural issues such as market access. This outcome, however, would require more from China than just moderate concessions such as increased purchases of U.S. goods and market access in certain sectors.  In the U.S.' view, a favorable agreement would require structural adjustment to the Chinese economic regime in order to address the substantive issues, such as technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation, that underlay the 301 investigation, and, most importantly, it would need to include mechanisms for enforcing commitments.

A mutually satisfactory agreement may be difficult to achieve. China has indicated that it has certain nonnegotiable issues. First, anything that could threaten the authority/legitimacy of the CCP would not be acceptable to China. Given China's history, the Chinese public would expect to see a strong government that would not give in to external pressure, especially from the United States. To the extent stringent enforcement mechanisms and substantial changes to Chinese laws would likely seem to compromise China's sovereignty, China would be unlikely to be able to agree to such mechanisms.

Second, China would be unlikely to accept a deal that could undermine its fundamental interests. Such interests include CCP's control of the economy and its ability to deliver continued economic growth. The Chinese government relies on its industrial policy to pick winners and allocate resources to support priority industries. Its SOE and technology policies are also seen as crucial for improving China's competitiveness. While it is possible to foresee China correcting certain distortive practices, such as those regarding IPR and market access, it is hard to imagine China accepting a truly level playing field for foreign companies.

In addition, an agreement will be difficult to achieve because China's global ambitions are not likely to diminish in the face of U.S. pressure. President Xi appears determined to have China champion the alternative path for development and growth, and China would seek to emerge from this dispute as the economy that withstood the challenge of the largest western market economy. China similarly seems unwilling to have the multilateral rules of the WTO modified to permit competing economic systems to coexist in a manner that each system understands and can accept. Thus, resolution of the U.S.-China dispute is unlikely bilaterally or through changes to the WTO.

Among the possible outcomes of the U.S.-China dispute are no deal and continuation of the present tariffs, a bad deal in which the U.S. fails to gain enforceable commitments from China regarding intellectual property, technology transfer, innovation, subsidies and other issues, and a good deal in which the U.S. achieves enforceable commitments from China and China achieves removal of the U.S. additional tariffs and a more stable and cooperative relationship. Only the first outcome seems reasonably likely in the near term. If, as reported, President Xi was unable to obtain the consent of his colleagues to the months old negotiation direction China had participated in, it is hard to imagine the third option being realized. Similarly, it is hard to imagine the Trump Administration deciding to accept a weak agreement where there is no actual improvement in underlying core issues the U.S. has with the Chinese system or no enforcement provisions that would actually be helpful in ensuring movement consistent with the underlying agreement. 

Many hope that the G-20 session in Tokyo at the end of June will provide the two presidents an opportunity to put an end to the escalation of conflict, but any such agreement would likely need to have the potential for trade negotiations to move forward. If China views any resolution of the distortions imposed on market economies by China's very different economic system as unacceptable, it is hard to see how forward movement can occur. Thus, how, when, and whether the U.S.-China trade dispute resolves depends on many factors, including if, as seems likely, the dispute continues indefinitely, the 2020 presidential election. The shift of the U.S.-China relationship towards more tension and competition is likely to last beyond the current trade battle.

For the global economy, what is needed is a path forward that either results in a single economic model being used by all major trading nations (arguably what many WTO members thought would happen when China became a member based on commitments it made in its accession protocol) or, if there are two be competing economic systems, rules of the road that permit countries using different economic systems to accept the type of economic outcome that flows from interaction of the two systems. While there are efforts at the WTO by various countries to look at issues where reform is needed, and these efforts could be a step in addressing the challenges of different economic systems, China has shown no signs of being willing to embrace either path forward. Thus, the WTO at present doesn't offer an alternative approach for resolving the U.S.-China dispute.

In short, it looks like a long road to sustainable economic equilibrium for the U.S. in its dispute with China.


[1] Initiation of Section 301 Investigation; Hearing; and Request for Public Comments: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 82 FR 40213 (August 24, 2017).

[2] USTR, 2019 Trade Policy Agenda and 2018 Annual Report of the President of the United States on the Trade Agreements Program, at 7; https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/2019_Trade_Policy_Agenda_and_2018_Annual_Report.pdf.

[3] USTR, Findings of the Investigation into China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 (March 22, 2018); https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/Section%20301%20FINAL.PDF.

[4] See Request for Consultations by the United States, China — Certain Measures Concerning the Protection of Intellectual Property Rights, WTO Doc. WT/DS542/1 (March 26, 2018); https://www.wto.org/english/tratop_e/dispu_e/cases_e/ds542_e.htm.

[5] Notice of Determination and Request for Public Comment Concerning Proposed Determination of Action Pursuant to Section 301: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 83 FR 14906 (April 6, 2018).

[6] USTR, 2019 Trade Policy Agenda at 18-19.

[7] USTR, 2019 Trade Policy Agenda at 19.

[8] Notice of Action and Request for Public Comment Concerning Proposed Determination of Action Pursuant to Section 301: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 83 FR 28710 (June 20, 2018).

[9] Notice of Action Pursuant to Section 301: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 83 FR 40823 (August 16, 2018).

[10] Notice of Modification of Section 301 Action: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 83 FR 47974 (September 21, 2018).

[11] USTR, 2019 Trade Policy Agenda at 20.

[12] See USTR, 2019 Trade Policy Agenda at 20 n.48 (listing retaliatory measures of China).

[13] Statement from the Press Secretary Regarding the President's Working Dinner with China, December 1, 2018; https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/statement-press-secretary-regarding-presidents-working-dinner-china/; see also 83 FR 65198 (December 19, 2018).

[14] Notice of Modification of Section 301 Action: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 84 FR 7966 (March 5, 2019).

[15] See, e.g., David Lawder, Jeff Mason and Michael Martina, Exclusive: China backtracked on almost all aspects of U.S. trade deal – sources, Reuters (May 8, 2019), https://www.msn.com/en-ca/kids/other/exclusive-china-backtracked-on-nearly-all-aspects-of-us-trade-deal-sources/ar-AAB4CpU?li=BBnb7Kz; Chris Buckley and Keith Bradsher, How Xi's Last-Minute Switch on U.S.-China Trade Deal Upended It, New York Times (May 16, 2019), https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/16/world/asia/trade-xi-jinping-trump-china-united-states.html.

[16] See Katsuji Nakazawa, How Xi Jinping's colleagues rejected an 'unequal' trade deal, Nikkei Asian Review (May 16, 2019); https://asia.nikkei.com/Editor-s-Picks/China-up-close/How-Xi-Jinping-s-colleagues-rejected-an-unequal-trade-deal.

[17] Id.

[18] Notice of Modification of Section 301 Action: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 84 FR 20459 (May 9, 2019).

[19] Request for Comments Concerning Proposed Modification of Action Pursuant to Section 301: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation, 84 FR 22564 (May 17, 2019).

[20] Id.

[21] 84 FR at 22564.

[22] Notice of the State Council Customs Tariff Commission on Raising the Increased Tariffs for Certain Goods Imported from the United States, Shuiweihuigonggao [2019] No., 3 (May 13, 2019); (Chinese only): http://gss.mof.gov.cn/zhengwuxinxi/zhengcefabu/201905/t20190513_3256788.html.

[23] 84 FR 22689 (May 17, 2019). Executive Order (EO) 13873 declares a national emergency with respect to the threats against information and communications technology and services in the United States and delegates authority to the Secretary of Commerce to prohibit transactions posing an unacceptable risk to the national security of the United States or the security and safety of United States persons.

[24] 84 FR 22961 (May 21, 2019).

[25] See, e.g., Joe Rennison and Colby Smith, Trade war sparks fears of China weaponising US Treasuries, Financial Times (May 22, 2019); https://www.ft.com/content/28277e4a-7c08-11e9-81d2-f785092ab560.

[26] See, e.g., Panos Mourdoukouta, China Threatens To Cut Rare Earths Supplies To The U.S. -- Bad Idea, Forbes (May 16, 2019); https://www.forbes.com/sites/panosmourdoukoutas/2019/05/16/china-threatens-to-cut-rare-earths-supplies-to-the-us-bad-idea/#4ba9bde07486.

[27] See, e.g., Xinhua, China to establish list of unreliable entities: MOC, May 31, 2019; http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-05/31/c_138106866.htm.

[28] See, e.g., David Goldman, China is investigating FedEx after it diverted packages to the United States, CNN Business (June 2, 2019); https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/02/tech/china-huawei-fedex/index.html..

[29] See In Full: China's White Paper on U.S. Economic and Trade Talks, Bloomberg News (June 2, 2019); https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-06-03/read-the-full-china-white-paper-on-u-s-economic-and-trade-talks.

[30] See, e.g., Evelyn Cheng, 'The US has backtracked': China releases official document blaming America for the trade war, CNBC (June 2, 2019); https://www.cnbc.com/2019/06/02/china-releases-official-document-that-blames-america-for-the-trade-war.html.

[32] See U.S. Trade Representative and the U.S. Department of Treasury respond to the "White Paper" issued by China on June 2, 2019 (June 3, 2019); https://ustr.gov/about-us/policy-offices/press-office/press-releases/2019/june/us-trade-representative-and-us.

[33] See id.

[34] See Jason Koutsoukis, Mnuchin sees no US-China trade progress before G-20 summit, Nikkei Asian Review (June 8, 2019); https://asia.nikkei.com/Economy/Trade-war/Mnuchin-sees-no-US-China-trade-progress-before-G-20-summit.

[35] The Brookings Institution, Global manufacturing scorecard: How the US compares to 18 other nations, July 10, 2018, available at: https://www.brookings.edu/research/global-manufacturing-scorecard-how-the-us-compares-to-18-other-nations/.

[36] Compiled from the website of the Chinese Ministry of Commerce.



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