Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Calls for Level Playing Field in Trade
Secretary Clinton visited the Boeing plant in Shanghai today and touched on trade issues. She also is wheels down in Beijing:
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called Sunday for a level playing field in commerce with China as the two sides prepared for talks on trade and other thorny issues.
“For trade to work in any economy and for it to produce the benefits we know it can, there must be a level playing field where domestic and international companies can compete freely and openly,” Clinton said in Shanghai.
Clinton’s comments came as she prepared to travel to Beijing, where she and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner will meet Chinese officials for the two-day annual Strategic and Economic Dialogue, beginning Monday.
The two sides were expected to discuss contentious trade issues such as the level of the Chinese yuan, amid accusations Beijing keeps the currency artificially low to boost its exports.
In recent months there have also been mounting accusations that China was backsliding on its commitments to free trade.
In April, an annual report by the US Trade Representative Ron Kirk said China had erected new hurdles to foreign competition with rules favouring domestic firms…
Sometimes I can’t help but wonder why Americans aren’t protesting in the streets with pitchforks as American corporations continue to destroy the US manufacturing market by sending more jobs overseas. I read an article a couple of days ago about how US banks are investing heavily in China’s [very smart] manufacturing of environmental supplies, services, technology etc. Oh the irony. Despite the fact that China essentially has little to no environmental regulations of their own (they have improved slightly on that front) they are taking advantage of the move towards green products and services in the US and elsewhere. That’s very smart on their part but it’s depressing to see US banks and corporations go to China for these services because they are cheaper than here in the U.S.
And while I doubt there is any chance that any human rights issues will be raised, some Tibetan human rights groups are urging Secretary Clinton to bring up the issue of Tibet in her talks with the Chinese government. I certainly can’t fault them for trying. *sigh*
Some photos from today: