Op-ed: US swims against tide of trade globalization
The US is flowing against the tide of globalization by advocating protectionism
to seek its own profits, and that will leave itself less room for development.
Recently, the US government has been threatening to increase tariffs on
imported goods as an act of trade protectionism and imposing its
unreasonable will on other countries.
US President Donald Trump holds that his country, the world’s largest
economy, is a “victim of free trade”, and has “been treated unfairly” in the
global trade system. Taking such an allegation as a banner, the US sees itself
as standing on “a moral high ground”.
But as a matter of fact, the country’s excuses and its bullying policies have
drawn mounting criticism around the world.
“Any imposition of tariffs, without going first to the World Trade Organization
(WTO), is sure to prompt a chorus of criticism not just from Beijing but from
US industry,” the Wall Street Journal warned before Trump signed the
memorandum that could impose tariffs on imports from China based on the
so-called Section 301 investigation into alleged Chinese intellectual property
and technology transfer practices.
“Even if it is permitted under WTO rules, it would upend the practice of
bringing disputes first to the Geneva trade body,” said another article
published by the Wall Street Journal.
Trade frictions should be solved based on the rules and within the framework
of the WTO, German newspaper Handelsblatt pointed out.
The US has inappropriately adopted trade protectionism, only to find that its
way of solving trade frictions is supported by nobody, even its allies.
After the US announced it would impose tariffs on imported steel and
aluminum products based on the Section 232 investigations, the European
Council denounced that the excuse of “national security” taken by the US is
At the meeting of the WTO Council for Trade in Goods, the EU, Japan, South
Korea and Australia warned that the trade barriers set up by the US will
threaten the rules-based multilateral trade system.
British International Trade Secretary Liam Fox told BBC that Britain is a firm
supporter of the WTO, and the country will abide by international trade rules.
All these clear responses are undoubtedly a strong blow to the US.
The so-called Section 301 and Section 232 investigations, which were derived
from the trade law of the US in the Cold War era, is inevitably unfair as the
country itself acts not only as police, prosecutor, but also judge of international
Bypassing the mature rules of the WTO