Admin. will fight unfair trade rules
By Staff -- Home Textiles Today, 9/19/2003 12:00:00 AM
Pledging to support a U.S. manufacturing sector hard hit by low-cost foreign imports, U.S. Commerce Secretary Don Evans told an economic conference here that his agency is launching a series of new initiatives design to protect American manufacturing and battle unfair trade practices.
Evans told the Detroit Economics Club the Bush administration has prepared a new agenda to help blue-collar industries more effectively compete on a leveled global playing field.
"Americans are willing to compete, on even terms, with any country in the world, but we will not stand for unfair competition," he said. "We are going to aggressively target unfair trade practices wherever they occur. American manufacturers can compete against any country's white collars and blue collars, but we will not submit to competing against another country's choke collars."
To knock down trade barriers and level the global playing field, Evans said his agency will create a new Unfair Practices Team; a new Office of Industry Analysis; and a new office, Assistant Secretary for Trade Promotion.
Additionally, he said, the Commerce Department will expedite implementation of standards initiative to ensure that American manufacturers are 'export-ready' to sell into global supply chains.
Evans said the Unfair Practices Team "will allow us to track, detect and confront unfair competition."
Taking specific aim at China, Evans said it is "one of the world's largest markets with vast opportunities for American manufacturers, provided, of course, that China's markets are actually governed by real, free and fair market forces."
And taking note of an issue raised recently by the American Textile Manufacturers Institute, which complained that China's policy of controlling its currency favors Chinese suppliers, Evans said, "This administration believes that currency values should be set by free-market forces." Evans took note as well of manufacturer complaints of "rampant piracy of intellectual property; forced transfer of technology form firms launching joint ventures in China; trade barriers; and capital markets that are largely insulated from free-market pressures."
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