The United States should not politicise its trade relations with China, Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing said. The two countries should solve trade problems under the framework of the World Trade Organisation, Li said. The trade between the two countries reached 211.6 billion US dollars in 2005, up 24.8% year on year, Li said.
Referring to the trade imbalance between the two sides, Li noted that China does not pursue surplus in its trade with the United States, and it is "ready to take positive measures" to solve the problem.
However, Li said, the restriction on export items of the United States to China is to be partially blamed for US deficit in its trade with China.
"Besides its Boeing planes, the United States only wants to sell its soybean, cotton and orange to China. For those more valuable items, it doesn't like to sell to us because it regards them as 'high-tech' products or as civilian-military goods," Li said. The minister said China's export to the United States can help curb inflation and create four to eight million jobs in the country. Also, consumers in the United States have benefited from the import of Chinese products, which are cheap but also in good quality, Li added. The minister said China has become a fastest growing market for the US export, adding that China is the largest importer of soybean and cotton of the United States.
With regard to the protection of intellectual property rights (IPR), another issue where the United States has complaints on China, Li said the Chinese government has taken measures in legislative, judicial, law-enforcement and educational fields to strengthen the IPR protection.
He told reporters in 2005 alone, China's industrial and commercial authorities handled more than 39,000 trade mark infringement cases. And Chinese courts tried more than 3,500 IPR- related cases.
The minister said the two countries saw fruitful cooperation on economy, trade, anti-terrorism, the nuclear issues of the Korean Peninsula and Iran, the reform of the United Nations, and the prevention and control of bird flu. Cooperation between China and the United States is not only beneficial to the two countries, but also contributes to regional and global peace, stability and development, Li said. The Chinese people unswervingly pursue a path of peaceful development, and its development does not pose a threat to any country, the minister said.
Meanwhile, an AFP report from Bangkok says: Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao has postponed his official visit to Bangkok due to Thailand's political crisis, government officials said Saturday. Wen's trip was set for April 8-10, but was postponed indefinitely because of Thailand's snap elections on April 2, a Thai government official said.
"The Chinese authorities asked that the trip be put off because they want to wait for Thailand to have a government after the upcoming election," the official told AFP. The trip had been planned since late last year to mark the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Thailand and China, but has been postponed twice already because of scheduling problems on the Chinese side.
Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra paid an official visit to Beijing in July last year. Thaksin called the snap elections in hopes of quelling weekly street protests demanding his resignation over claims of corruption and abuse of power.
But the opposition has boycotted the polls, threatening to deepen the country's political crisis.