Home>News Center>China

European protectionist fiasco a lesson for the US
(China Daily)
Updated: 2005-08-31 05:53

European retailers' warnings that the hold-up of Chinese textile imports could lead to stores going bankrupt and shoppers facing empty shelves this autumn and winter galvanized EU trade negotiators into action to review the quota agreement reached just three months ago.

This trade fiasco demonstrates that protective measures, at best, are zero-sum games for those who resort to them. The bigger market shares domestic textile producers gain from artificial trade barriers will be largely offset by losses not only for domestic consumers but also other related domestic businesses.

Worse, protectionism is a loss-loss deal for both sides in international trade while undermining the global effort to build a free and fair trade order.

Trade protectionism has incurred huge costs for Chinese textile producers. Rising uncertainty in the global market has seriously disrupted their production. The consequences hit numerous low-wage Chinese textile workers harder than the current hold-up is affecting European retailers.

The two-day China-US trade talks on textiles, the fourth round since June, began yesterday in Beijing. The United States still threatens to slap protectionist measures on several categories of Chinese textile imports.

The US Government's decision to yield to domestic protectionists has time and again egged them on to demand more and more.

But the real cost of protectionism has not been fully taken into trade negotiators' consideration.

Even if the United States avoids supply disruptions that have recently plagued Europe by timely replacing Chinese exports with imports from other countries, consumers will have to pay more, as those in Europe will, as cheap Chinese goods are refused.

The long-term consequences of postponing necessary industrial restructuring that can maximize its competitive edge otherwise will only get more serious.

To prosper in the new world economy, the United States must fix its industrial structure problems from a domestic perspective.

(China Daily 08/31/2005 page4)

Page: 12

Leshan giant buddha
Explosion near Sanlitun
Armed police training
  Today's Top News     Top China News

European protectionist fiasco a lesson for the US



7,000 coal mines to close in crackdown



US crews pass dead to reach storm survivors



Official lauds KMT role in anti-Japan war



Nuke talks to resume in week of Sep. 12



Itinerary for President Hu Jintao's US visit


  China to buy US goods to reduce surplus
  Chinese woman recounts US border beating
  Nuke talks to resume in week of Sep. 12
  WHO praises China signing anti-tobacco pact
  China, US begin 4th round of textile talks
  China offers Sri Lanka assistance package
  Go to Another Section  
  Story Tools  
  Related Stories  
China, US begin 4th round of textile talks
Chinese, US officials discussing apparel quotas
EU takes steps to unblock China textiles
EU to propose to end textile row with China
Sino-US textile talks to resume
Industry council welcomes textile talks
No agreement with EU at textile talks
  News Talk  
  It is time to prepare for Beijing - 2008