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China keeps its promise to follow WTO rules

By Zhong Sheng (People's Daily)    10:57, September 04, 2019

The US has seriously violated the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and undermined the international rule of law and trade order as it provoked and escalated economic and trade frictions with other countries.

However, some US officials, who completely ignored the principles of the multilateral trading system, constantly distorted reality and accused China of breaking the WTO rules.

Facts are the most convincing proof. The arbitrary acts of certain people in the US have drawn widespread criticism from the international community and even all walks of life in the US.

China has always supported the multilateral trading system and opposed unilateralism and protectionism. It is widely acknowledged by the global society as a strong protector and builder of international rule of law.

No one can deny the fact that China has comprehensively fulfilled its WTO accession commitments.

The country has been a strong advocate of free trade since its accession to the WTO in 2001. It has substantially opened its market to the world, enhanced the transparency of its opening-up policies and honored its commitments on protecting intellectual property rights, shouldering its responsibility as a major country.

As of 2010, China had fulfilled all of its tariff reduction commitments, reducing the average tariff level from 15.3 percent in 2001 to 9.8 percent.

It cut the average tariff rate of agricultural products to 15.2 percent, far lower than that imposed by the WTO's developed members (39 percent).

China aimed at further opening up the market. In 2018, the overall tariff level dropped to 7.5 percent. The country has shared its development dividends with the rest of the world, with the scale of foreign direct investment into China ranking first among developing countries for 26 consecutive years since 1992.

China has firmly observed and upheld the WTO rules, winning general recognition from the international community.

Since it joined the WTO, China has actively promoted trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, safeguarded the dispute settlement mechanism, and fully participated in the review of trade policies.

It has vigorously supported the integration of developing members into the multilateral trading system and firmly opposed unilateralism and protectionism.

China has followed the WTO rules and supported the multilateral trading system as promised through practical actions. Roberto Azevedo, Director-General of WTO, said that China's role in the system had increased a lot since it joined the WTO.

Certain American politicians need to realize their incompetence in complying with the WTO rules, as the US always places domestic law above the international rules.

The US received 154 WTO complaints altogether, yet it failed to abide by the rulings made by the organization in 53 cases, legal experts pointed out. The country didn't fulfill its obligations in more than half of the 11 cases where it was required to amend the federal law or state law.

Some people in the US have always applied the international law in a selective way. They wasted time and energy making up lies to fool both themselves and others, but their attempts are doomed to fail. They might as well face the reality and return to the right track to solve problems in a down-to-earth manner.

Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. China has always kept its promise to observe the WTO rules. In this respect, the US really needs to face itself and introspect a lot.

(Zhong Sheng is a pen name often used by People's Daily to express its views on foreign policy.) 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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