back to article You can't have that many! China scuppers US, EU tech tariff talks

The EU and the US have accused China of continuing to block attempts to get rid of trade tariffs on technology goods by asking for far too many exclusions. The various governments have been discussing the expansion of the Information Technology Agreement at the World Trade Organisation (WTO), where China has been trying the …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Whatever the Chinese impose on others in terms of trade tariffs, impose on them. They will soon get the point.


    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      > Whatever the Chinese impose on others in terms of trade tariffs, impose on them. They will soon get the point.

      If the trade balance between China and their trading partners was balanced, you'd have a good point.

      However, since China is a net exporter of practically everything, reciprocity is not a realistic proposition.

      1. paulc

        em.. if their goods cost more to buy in our markets because of the tariffs we impose on them, then it does matter as it levels the field for local manufacturers

        Don't forget that the Chinese have been cheating and waging economic war on the west for decades now by deliberately pegging their currency to the dollar and not allowing it to float to it's true high value. This makes their goods and labour very cheap and also makes our products expensive in their market.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        Because China exports so much more than they import, free trade agreements are in their benefit.

        It would probably be in our benefit to slap a tariff on all goods exported from China, but the free market lovers long took over our government - they're owned by the corporations that exported much of their manufacturing to China, and benefit from cheap parts from China for stuff that's labeled "made in the USA"

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @skelband

          I'm not a big lover of governments messing with free trade. Any attempt at restricting trade or imposing tariffs/duty always has side effects.

          Look at the enormous duty on fairy products into Canada. Hopelessly inefficient dairy farms and ridiculously expensive, yet shit cheese in the shops.

          1. Anonymous Coward

            Re: @skelband

            Erm, dairy products, I mean :D

            Although fairy products do have a bit of a rough ride here.

    2. stizzleswick

      "They will soon get the point."

      Would be nice if it worked, really. Back in the 1960s, the U.S. imposed heavy tariffs (90 % says one source) on European steel products (targeting imported cars specifically, but they didn't want to go ahead and say it outright). The European Community answered by imposing a 79 % tariff on U.S. produce, driving the price of pipe tobacco and bananas up noticeably. Most European car manufacturers responded by manufacturing cars in the U.S. and in countries nearby on which the U.S. did not impose those ridiculous tariffs.

      Both the U.S. and the European tariffs are still in place 50 years later. Guess nobody learned anything from the whole episode, except that that the state, being the man in the middle, can fill its coffers with most consumers not noticing that it is at their expense.

  2. Britt Johnston

    how high is high enough??

    <<In a high-level meeting..., Beijing’s negotiators said they have zero mandate ...>>

    That would be a low-level meeting, then.

  3. Craig Cruden

    As Jim Booth said reciprocity, if China wants 148 exclusions - each country would be able to choose 148 categories of Chinese goods to exclude.

  4. Arctic fox

    I find very strange that this report is.......

    ........... pretty much entirely based on what the Western negotiators say is going on. I do not know whether the Chinese have a case, a bit of a case or no case at all - and I certainly would not gain any insight into that by virtue of reading something that could just as well have been drafted by the Foreign Office.

    1. Bumpy Cat

      Re: I find very strange that this report is.......

      This is possibly a side-effect of governance in China, where no-one knows what's going on.

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