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Trade issues 'should be resolved' by negotiations
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A top Chinese commerce official Sunday urged China and the United States to resolve frictions and disputes in bilateral trade through dialogue on "an equal footing" and not to "politicize" them.


Some media hype in the United States about China's foreign exchange rate, food safety and intellectual property rights has been "hindering the normal development" of bilateral economic and trade ties, Chen Deming, newly-appointed vice-minister of commerce, told China Daily.


He made the comments on the eve of the Third China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue, scheduled to start in Beijing on Wednesday.


Citing a growing number of bills about China-US economic ties in the US Congress and increasing trade disputes between the two sides this year, Chen said a trend to "politicize economic and trade issues" is emerging, adding that as the 2008 US presidential election approaches, the trend may escalate.


China and the United States are becoming more and more "indispensable" to each other in the fast economic globalization process and are confronting the same challenges, Chen said.


Both countries will benefit from even closer bilateral economic ties, he said.


China's labor-intensive industries, which produce mainly medium- and-low-end products, have made vast amounts of inexpensive but good-quality products available to US consumers, who are estimated to save more than US$100 billion from them each year.


Meanwhile, China is one of the major export destinations of the United States, which posted a year-on-year increase of 32 percent last year.


Direct investment from the United States has also benefited US companies operating in China which achieved a record sales revenue of $120 billion last year; meanwhile, Chinese companies had access to advanced technology and management as well as generated more employment, Chen said.


"The growing economic co-independence has expanded common interests and scale of economic cooperation between the two sides," he said.


"Thus, the two sides should clarify the responsibility each side should shoulder, face and resolve structural problems in the economy, and strengthen dialogue and communication," he said.


"We should avoid unreasonably and unilaterally blaming the other side", he said.


(China Daily December 10, 2007)

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