WINDHOEK – Chinese Ambassador to Namibia Zhang Yiming warned African ‘friends’ to watch their relations with the USA, a trade adversary he branded ‘greedy, spoilt and untrustworthy’ at a heated press conference yesterday.
Zhang expressed these sentiments while briefing media in Windhoek on the widely publicised China-US trade friction, which he said has drawn attention of the international community, including Namibia.
“Today’s media briefing is to explain the truth of the trade friction, to win the understanding and support of everyone, to jointly oppose the economic bullying of the United States, and to maintain a sound world economic order,” Zhang told journalists.
He said the dispute was sparked by the United States, and China, in a tit-for-tat move, was forced to fight back.
Zhang said since President Donald Trump administration took office in 2017, the administration has threatened additional tariffs and other measures and provoked frequent economic and trade frictions with its major trading partners, threatening to impose additional tariffs and other means.
According to Zhang, since February last year, China-US economic and trade consultations have been conducted for 11 rounds, and the two sides have agreed on most parts of the possible deal.
However, at the beginning of May this year when consultations were about to be completed, the US side suddenly launched a tariff threat and bargain “recklessly”, said the ambassador.
“On May 10 and May 13, the US imposed additional tariffs on imports from China twice, amounting to a value of US$500 billion this time,” explained Zhang.
He said recently, the US administration imposed “long arm jurisdiction” and sanctions against Huawei and other Chinese companies on the fabricated basis of national security.He said in the face of the US unreasonable bullying, China had to take the necessary countermeasures.
Zhang said in May 31, China announced that it would establish an unreliable entity list system.
“Perhaps the best counterattack on the unscrupulous ‘spoilers and untrustworthy’ people is to get them bound by the rules,” he said.
He said the China-US trade frictions have escalated repeatedly. ”Who is responsible for this?” he questioned. Zhang says the economy and trade consultations between the two sides have been free of setbacks.
“Who backtracked on the consensus? It is the United Sates, not China,” he said.
Until now, he said all the China-US trade frictions were unilaterally provoked by the US government.
He said even during the consultations, the US was performing hegemony and intimidation to the fullest.
“The US has repeatedly violated consensus and change its face. The more the US government is offered, the more it wants,” said the ambassador.
He said the U.S has always ignored China’s core concerns, persisted with exorbitant demand, maintained the additional tariffs imposed since the friction began, and insisted on including mandatory requirements concerning China’s sovereign affairs in the deal, which thus directly leading to unsuccessful negotiations.
“As for African friends, when it is dark in the west, it is bright in the east,” he said, adding that with shared historical experiences and development vision, China and Africa have always been a community with a shared future weal and woe.
Eric Atkins, Public Affairs Officer for the US Embassy in Windhoek, said the local embassy does not comment directly on decisions by Washington.
“The issue originates from the Trump administration in Washington and thus we are in no position to comment on it with authority,” he said.
2019-06-06 09:11:52 13 days ago