China warns EU against escalating trade disputes | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 16.05.2013
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China warns EU against escalating trade disputes

China has urged the EU to stop raising new trade barriers or face consequences. This comes in response to EU punitive tariffs on Chinese solar exports and EU efforts to launch a probe into the country's telecom products.

Attempts by the European Union to raise hurdles for Chinese exports to the EU would meet "assertive" measures to defend China's lawful interests and rights, Shen Danyang, a spokesman for the Ministry of Commerce, told a regular news conference Thursday.

"Any consequences caused must be borne by the party which provoked the friction," he added, referring to recently announced plans by the European Executive Commission to shield the 27-nation bloc from Chinese price dumping on certain goods.

Brussels is planning to impose punitive tariffs of up to 68 percent on solar products made in China, accusing Beijing of undercutting global market prices with huge state subsidies.

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In addition, the European commission announced Wednesday it would open an anti-dumping investigation into China-made mobile telecommunications networks and their essential elements.

Noting that European manufacturers of such products would have a much bigger market share in China than Chinese firms in the EU, Shen warned that trade actions taken by Brussels would harm both sides.

"The abuse of trade remedy measures in a reckless and arbitrary manner will do nothing for solving trade frictions and will severely dampen confidence in economic recovery," he said.

However, China didn't want to go into a trade war with the European Union, he added.

Chinese exports of telecommunications network equipment to the EU amount to about 1 billion euros ($1.3 billion) each year, according to official figures from Brussels. At the same time, the world's second-largest economy exported solar products worth about 22 billion euros to the EU, while importing solar equipment and raw material to the tune of 7.5 billion euros from the 27-nation bloc.

uhe/dr (AFP, Reuters)

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