China suffered heavily from trade protectionism which has been rising after the outbreak of the global financial crisis, a Ministry of Commerce official said here Saturday.
MOC spokesman Yao Jian said that some countries and regions resorted to expanding exports to boost economic recovery after efforts to stimulate domestic demand failed, and even depreciated domestic currency and increased subsidies to raise competitiveness of domestics exports.
"Such moves lead to the rising trade protectionism," Yao told a forum on international trade development held in this northern port city neighboring Beijing.
Yao said 19 economies launched 88 probes into Chinese products in the first 9 months, involving 10.2 billion U.S. dollars of export goods. The two figures were 29 percent and 125 percent respectively higher than the same period last year.
The 88 probes against Chinese products included 57 cases of anti-dumping, nine cases of anti-subsidy, 15 cases of safeguard actions and seven cases of special protection, according to Yao.
"The United States in particular, its trade dispute with China is increasing", he said.
In the first nine months, the U.S. launched 14 probes into Chinese exports, with a total value of 5.84 billion U.S. dollars, soaring by 639 percent from a year earlier.
On Thursday, the United States decided to slap preliminary anti-dumping duties on made-in-China steel pipes. It was the biggest U.S. trade action against China to date, topping an earlier move to put a 35-percent tariff on 1.85 billion U.S. dollars of Chinese-made tyres. Last year, Chinese steel pipe exports to the U.S. was around 3.2 billion U.S. dollars.
The spokesman also said China's exports to major economies were falling after the outbreak of the global financial crisis but the market shares of Chinese products in these economies were rising.
According to Yao, China's exports to the U.S. were 184.9 billion U.S. dollars in the first nine months, down nearly 15 percent from a year earlier. But the imports from China accounted for 18.84 percent of total U.S. imports, up 3.88 percentage points year on year in the first nine months.
In the same period, China's exports to Japan dropped 14.7 percent to 87.92 billion U.S. dollars. While 22.3 percent of Japan's total imports came from China, up 3.99 percentage points from a year earlier, he said.
China's exports to the EU fell 21.6 percent to 161.43 billion U.S. dollars, but accounted for 17.4 percent of the EU's total imports, up 2.94 percentage points, Yao said.
Though China's total exports fell notably in the first nine months, the market shares were increasing, which indicated the competitiveness of China's foreign trade, he added.
In the first nine months, China's exports amounted to 1.56 trillion U.S. dollars, down nearly 21 percent.
(Xinhua News Agency November 7, 2009)