- China’s former chief trade negotiator has hit out at Beijing over its approach to the US trade war, saying it’s not thinking “deeply enough” about it.
- “If we have people who always talk about politics engaging in negotiations, we will never have a deal,” Long Yongtu said on Sunday.
- Long’s comments come as tensions between the two nations appear to have thawed somewhat ahead of an expected meeting between the countries’ presidents in Buenos Aires, Argentina, later this month.
China’s former chief trade negotiator has hit out at his country’s handling of rising trade tensions with the US, saying that Beijing is failing to think “deeply enough” about its approach to the conflict.
Speaking on Sunday, Long Yongtu, a former minister in China’s foreign trade department, told a conference that China had been too politically driven in talks so far and should take a more pragmatic approach focused on the economic realities of the trade war.
“If we have people who always talk about politics engaging in negotiations, we will never have a deal,” he said at the annual conference of the media outlet Caixin, according to a report from the South China Morning Post.
“We don’t think deeply enough,” he added.
In particular, Long singled out China’s approach to tariffs on soybeans, one of the areas hardest hit by the trade war so far. China is the largest buyer of soybeans in the world, but it has placed a 25% tariff on soybean imports from the US and has turned to Brazil in an attempt to meet domestic demand.