Stock markets across the world climbed higher on Tuesday April 10th 2018 as the Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a speech at the Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) revealing some of China’s government plans on how it will try to open up its economy. The Boao Forum for Asia is referred to as the “Asian Davos” since it is modelled on the World Economic Forum which is held annually in Switzerland. The Forum promotes regional economic integration and has as a target to deepen the economic exchange, cooperation and coordination within Asia.

Chinese President Xi Jinping reveals plans over economy

The Chinese President Xi Jinping, speaking at the BFA, said that the Chinese economy is opening up and it is going to open up further thanks to a series of reforms that will be implemented. According to a CNBC (Consumer News and Business Channel) report, the President of China noted that his administration will lower import tariffs for cars and decrease duties on other kind of products.

The head of the Chinese government added, during his speech, that he will strengthen the protection of intellectual property and that he will proceed in taking the necessary measures to improve the investment environment for international companies. Furthermore, the Chinese President said that he will take the initiative to increase imports during 2018, especially of products that are required by the population. President Xi Jinping stressed that China doesn’t seek trade surplus and added that “we have a genuine desire to increase imports and achieve greater balance of international payments under the current account.”

US and China at odds

On April 8th 2018, the United States (US) President Donald Trump had written on his Twitter account that “the US hasn’t had a trade surplus with China in 40 years. They must end unfair trade, take down barriers and charge only reciprocal tariffs. The US is losing $500 billions a year and has been losing billions of US Dollars for decades.” On April 9th 2018, President Trump appeared optimistic by saying that “China will take down its trade barrier because it is the right thing to do…a deal will be made on trade.”

Political analysts suggested that the Chinese President Xi Jinping used his speech at the Boao Forum for Asia to reply to President Trump’s comments. “The cold war and zero-sum mentality looks out of place in today’s world. Arrogance or only focusing on one’s own interests will get us nowhere. Only peaceful development and cooperation can truly bring win-win or all-win results,” said President Xi Jinping.

In his first remarks since the trade conflict with the US began, the Chinese President stressed that developed countries should stop imposing restrictions on normal and reasonable trade of high-tech products and relax export controls on such trade with China. Earlier in 2018, the US imposed tariffs on imported solar panels made in China, with the Chinese retaliating by implementing tariffs on 128 US products. On Tuesday April 10th 2018, China filed a complaint against new US tariffs on steel and aluminum products. China claimed in its complaint that the duties have breached international trade rules.

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