China, Russia Say No to Exclusion of Trump U.S. from Trade Pact
Nov. 18, 2016 (EIRNS)—Reacting to irresponsible reports and statements, both Russia and China have insisted that the new economic and trade agreements on the agenda of the Asia-Pacific Economic Conference summit in Peru do not, and will not, involve any exclusion or isolation of the United States. They are clarifying that the death of Barack Obama’s Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) "trade agreement" does not mean that the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific agreement, originally proposed by China, will exclude President Trump’s United States.
"views as foolishness the media reports about negotiations at APEC about a new trade association, comprising Russia and China but not the United States,"
the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Ambassador-at-Large and APEC Senior Official Valery Sorokin told TASS on Wednesday.
"The Asia-Pacific zone of free trade will be open, inclusive, and will incorporate all. After the start of detailed talks, it will be each economy’s individual discussion—to join it or not."
An "analysis" of APEC’s summit published in Germany’s Deutsche Welle today was called "The United States Isn’t Calling the Shots in Peru—China Is." Noting that Obama has failed, and that APEC’s 21 nations produce 54% of world GDP, the German analysis says the United States will now be the one to whom the rules are given.
But if China is calling any shots, it is stating that it will not call the shots unilaterally. A lead article in Xinhua today quotes Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang at a press conference Friday, saying,
"China does not seek a leading role in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) or the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP)."
While outlining that China expects the RCEP to be negotiated in the framework of ASEAN and FTAAP in the framework of APEC, Geng said,
"We hope to decide the next step with all relevant sides during the APEC summit in Peru to achieve more progress in building up the Asia-Pacific free trade zone. China has always held an open attitude towards arrangements conducive to liberating and facilitating regional trade and investment.... Trade arrangements should seek to work with, not against, each other."
He warned that all sides should prevent trade arrangements in the Asia-Pacific region from becoming fragmented or politicized.