Market Access, Currency Value to Top US/China Dialogue
U.S. Treasury Secretary
Speaking Tuesday to the U.S./
"It still needs to appreciate more, it's still undervalued, and that is something that hurts Chinese consumers. It reduces their purchasing power. One of the things that's so important in terms of
Lew said this is a threshold issue that is fundamental to the trust between the two countries. An undervalued currency tends to boost Chinese exports and hurts foreign competition.
Lew said a market-determined exchange rate coupled with a more open Chinese economy will be good for the U.S. economy and American businesses' ability to compete on a level playing field.
"Frankly, I think it's in
Lew said progress has been mixed after
"I think it's been, you know, a slow process. I think it started out with almost everything being put on the 'closed' list. Now, as things are taken off the 'closed' list, we're finding that, just yesterday, a list came out, so we haven't fully digested it. But, on first glance, it doesn't appear to be of major interest for U.S. market access. So, it seems to be items that give you a number of things that are open, but not a lot of business activity," said Lew.
Hufbauer said the slow pace of reform in
Lew praised the Chinese for their focus on enforcement of intellectual property protection, but called for a more sustained, continuous efforts to establish so-called "rules of the road."
Lew also hopes the discussion on cyber-security, especially in light of recent allegations of hacking by Chinese military personnel of U.S. corporate trade secrets, will continue.
"There is a fundamental difference that we do not view it as an acceptable practice for governmental entities to participate in the process of, you know, securing trade secrets for the economic benefit of firms in their country. And, we've made that clear in a general way. We've made it clear in a rather specific way. And, I don't think there's any question but it's a source of some difference between us. We need to engage on that, and we need to continue to engage on that, and I believe that there will be ongoing discussions," said Lew.
The U.S. Treasury chief says
Hufbauer said that as the two sides sit down next week in
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