CHINA / National

China seeks eased US export controls
Updated: 2006-06-28 07:07

The Chinese government is urging the United States to ease or even abolish controls over exports of high-technology goods to China, following indications Washington is proposing to tighten such restrictions.

"We hope that the U.S. can take concrete measures to relax or lift its restrictions on high-tech exports to China, to better address the imbalance of China-U.S. trade," Jiang Yu, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, said at a regular press briefing Tuesday.

A report by the Financial Times newspaper Tuesday said the U.S. Commerce Department was preparing new proposals that would strengthen curbs on exports of high-technology goods to China.

The paper said a final draft of the restrictions had been presented to Chinese commerce ministry officials on Friday, and that the proposals were expected to be published in the coming days.

Jiang's comments Tuesday did not specifically address those reported proposals.

Chinese officials complain that the restrictions are an unfair trade barrier, hindering China's access to advanced civilian technology and contributing to Beijing's ballooning trade surplus with the United States, which hit a record $202 billion last year.

The controls on exports to China are aimed at preventing transfer of sensitive technology to China's army. Some critics have said the restrictions are too broad, putting many items that have no specific military applications off limits.

Among the goods at issue are advanced communications equipment and high-speed computers.

U.S. business groups have urged Washington to revamp the export controls program or risk losing competitiveness on a wide range of products in major markets like China.


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