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US economist says export controls on Huawei overstep trade deal with China

Xinhua | Updated: 2020-06-24 14:12
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A smartphone with the Huawei and 5G network logo is seen on a PC motherboard in this illustration picture taken January 29, 2020. [Photo/Agencies]

WASHINGTON -- The United States has "overstepped" the China-US phase-one economic and trade agreement by imposing export controls on Huawei, said a renowned US economist Tuesday, urging the US administration to suspend any new punitive measures.

"The Trump administration wants China to continue to purchase US goods according to the trade deal, but at the same time the US imposes new punitive restrictions on China, such as the ban on international exports of semiconductors to Huawei," Jeffrey Sachs, an economics professor at Columbia University, told Xinhua via email.

Noting that the trade deal should be based on both sides refraining from any further punitive actions, Sachs said he believes that "these new punitive restrictions break the agreement by unilaterally imposing new economic burdens on China."

"In this case, the US has overstepped the agreement, and should agree to put on hold any new punitive measures," Sachs said.

The United States has used state power to persistently suppress and contain the Chinese tech giant Huawei for over a year in the name of national security and abused export controls.

Sachs has recently noted that the Trump administration's aim is to hinder China's technological advancement. "It's a stupid and harmful policy not only for China but also for the US, in my view, but it could even get worse on the path to the November elections," he told Xinhua in an earlier interview via email.

Amid rising tensions between the two countries, Sachs urged the US administration to cooperate with China to "help stop the global crisis but also to speed the global recovery."

Sachs, who is also a senior United Nations (UN) advisor, said the last thing the world wants and needs right now is new geopolitical tensions.

"I believe that it is especially important for China to emphasize friendly relations and global cooperation with all parts of the world despite the Trump Administration's anti-China provocations," Sachs said.

Even as the Trump administration emphasizes the unilateral "America First" policy that is "alienating many countries," Sachs said China "will rightly win many friends around the world by maintaining a high level of global cooperation and an emphasis on win-win policies."

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