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Published: Sun, August 20, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

United States launches probe over China's intellectual property practices

United States launches probe over China's intellectual property practices

In addition to these four types of conduct, interested parties may submit for consideration information on other acts, policies and practices of China relating to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation described in the President's Memorandum that might be included in this investigation, and/or might be addressed through other applicable mechanisms, Lighthizer said.

"We will safeguard the copyrights, patents, trademarks, trade secrets and other intellectual property that is so vital to our security and to our prosperity. I notified the President that today I am beginning an investigation under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974", Lighthizer said in a statement. "This will be one of USTR's highest priorities, and we will report back to the President as soon as possible". It allows the President of the U.S. to unilaterally impose tariffs or other trade restrictions against foreign countries.

The United States is China's second-largest trading partner after the European Union, and had a deficit of almost $310 billion a year ago.

Last Thursday, Trump reiterated the suggestion that he could soften his position on trade if Beijing were to do more to help rein in nuclear-armed North Korea.

China strongly resisted the US Trade Representative's investigation into China's infringements on intellectual property rights.

The US has launched its first direct measure against Chinese trade policies, initiating an investigation to determine if its largest trading partner has been engaging in unfair practices, a move that could potentially trigger an economic war. The newspaper quoted Chad Brown, a trade specialist at the Peterson Institute of International Economics (PIIE), warning the USA that China can use the United States at the WTO.

China has been warning the Trump administration against bypassing the WTO since January.

Shortly before leaving the White House, former chief strategist Steve Bannon gave an exclusive interview to The American Prospect, a left-leaning magazine, in which he said the United States should be "maniacally focused" on an "economic war with China". The Commerce Ministry also stressed that unilateral trade sanctions will ultimately affect both consumers and businesses and cooperation was the right direction.

The US was warned by the Chinese Ministry that if it fails to respect basic facts and multilateral trade rules and takes measure that harm bilateral economic and trade relations, the country will not sit by silently. Find us on Facebook too!

"Fighting a trade war has no future".

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