US, EU team up on raw minerals trade case against China

US, EU team up on raw minerals trade case against China

The United States and the European Union on Tuesday announced that they have teamed up on an expanded trade challenge against China over export restrictions on raw materials needed for manufacturing.

U.S. Trade Representative Michael FromanMichael B.G. FromanOn The Money: Sanders unveils plan to wipe .6T in student debt | How Sanders plan plays in rivalry with Warren | Treasury watchdog to probe delay of Harriet Tubman bills | Trump says Fed 'blew it' on rate decision Democrats give Trump trade chief high marks US trade rep spent nearly M to furnish offices: report MORE and EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström combined their cases at the World Trade Organization (WTO), arguing that the duties and quotas give Beijing a competitive advantage at the expense EU and U.S. workers.

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"The restraints we challenged last week, along with the ones we have included today, are part and parcel of the same troubling policy — one that provides advantages for China in important manufacturing sectors at the expense of the rest of the world,” Froman said.

The nine raw minerals are widely used in the aerospace, automotive and electronics sectors.

On July 13, the United States requested consultations with China regarding its export duties.

The expanded request, which supersedes last week's filing, adds China’s export duties on chromium, as well as its export quotas on antimony, indium, magnesia, talc and tin.

"We hope this joint EU-U.S. trade action will motivate China to reconsider its current policy," Malmström said on a call with reporters.

The export duties and quotas raise prices for manufacturers outside of China while lowering the prices paid by China’s manufacturers.

Malmström said that the EU decided to file its own case after she attended meetings in China last week that failed to solve the dispute.

"That failed, unfortunately, and that's why we decided to go ahead," she said.

The U.S. case initially focused on export duties because they had been part of the discussions during the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade.