Adherence to dialogue sure to yield results

16:17, May 25, 2010      

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The second round of China-U.S. Strategic Economic Dialogues(SED)is held in Beijing from Monday to Tuesday (May 24-25), and its core target is aimed to establish a "positive, cooperative and comprehensive Sino-U.S, relationship". Addressing its opening session, Chinese President Hu Jintao said that China and the United States will step up macroeconomic policy coordination and promote world economic recovery.

If the second round of China-U.S SED is compared to a showcase, then the issue concerning the U.S. Export Controls very much resembles slices or sections. The showcase will facilitate observing an overall picture of Sino-U.S. relations, whereas the sections will help recognize the essence of contradictions and frictions.

Viewing from the showcase, people would witness the unprecedented Sino-U.S. "line-up" at the grand Beijing gathering at present. It shows that there will definitely no retreat, although there exist twists and turns in the present Sino-U.S. relations, as any retreat impairs interests of both sides and also jeopardize or damages the interests of the world as a whole.

Viewing from the sections, people will see that it is imperative to tackle practical problems if Sino-U.S. relations are to make progress. For instance, Chinese Minister of Commerce Chen Deming and U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke laid bare the specific issue of U.S. export controls in their talks on Sunday. But the settlement of this issue requires a very difficult process.

China has urged the United States to ease or alleviate its export controls, and this is absolutely not a new problem. The crux of matter, however, is the issue that involves the positioning of China in Washington D.C., with an implication of "triggering of a whole"

On Washington's political spectrum, China's colors can be said to be the most uncertain and most ambiguous. China is a friend of the U.S., and also its rival; in some areas, in a given period of time or for some people, China can be even a political adversary but, for others, China is a very good or ideal partner. So, China is entangled in a position of neither friend nor foe.

This point can be seen more clearly on the list of goods under U.S. export control. The most direct yardstick for the measurement of the relationships between the U.S. and a certain country is no other than the U.S. export control laws and regulations. Apart from the military export products now under embargo, China has a little higher status than a hostile nation of the United States in term of such items of computer export control as chemical products, rocket technology and materials and, therefore, China's position is not distinct in the eyes of the U.S.

Export control laws and regulations represent the product of the cold war era following World War II. Out of its political needs, the United States in the 80's of the 20th century eased its grip of high-tech export to China but tightened it again from the early 1990s. With the deepening of Sino-U.S. economic and trade ties and at the spur by personages from bilateral economic and trade circles in recent years, however, American export control has been alleviated to some extent. Take the approval of separated, individual cases, some Chinese firms were granted the status of "qualified end-users". But the export controls alleviated slightly by Washington has soon provoked strong voices from opposition.
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