The real damage of China's trade policy (Rep. Linda Sanchez and Rep. Tim Ryan)

·         At the December 15, 2010 Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade meeting, the United States Trade Representative expressed concern about, and took steps to address, China’s indigenous innovation policies, its subsidies to the clean energy sector, and its failure to adequately protect intellectual property rights owned by American firms. 

·         With China’s President Hu Jintao in town this week for an official state visit, it is sure that trade will once again be on the table.  The President is likely to repeat some of the concerns that members of his Administration have already expressed, including Chinese currency manipulation, market access barriers, and “dumping” of Chinese-made products at below-market prices. 

·         And even the American Chamber of Commerce in China noted in its 2010 White Paper on the State of American Business in China,  that ”Many new [Chinese] industrial policies show signs of protectionism that arouse concern over whether market access for both foreign-invested enterprises and trading partners will narrow significantly in the years ahead.”   

Notwithstanding the impact of the iPhone on the U.S. economy, China has not lived up to the promises it made when it joined the World Trade Organization.  Its skirting of the rules has already caused many American firms to shut their doors for good.  If we fail to take the Chinese threat seriously, we would not be doing our job for America, its people, or its businesses.  The Journal would do well to consider the impact on American businesses of its “see no evil” policy with respect to trade with China.