The surprise withdrawal of all Chinese export tariffs on textiles, just a day or so after dramatic increases were announced, suggests that the Chinese are now negotiating with themselves I “thought”:http://www.inquit.com/article/429/us-and-eu-quotas-to-force-up-world-clothing-price the Chinese move was clever, and no more cynical than the policy of the U.S. and E.U. on garment imports. But … bq. “The government revoked the bulk of tariffs imposed on Jan. 1 and increases to those taxes announced on May 20, the Ministry of Finance said in a statement today. The ministry didn’t say why it removed the tariffs, which were imposed to control the industry after an end to global textiles quotas on Jan. 1. “This is a strong gesture from China to the U.S. and EU,” said Long Guoqiang, a senior trade researcher at the State Council Development and Research Center in Beijing.”(“Bloomberg.com(link to this excerpt)”:http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=10000103&sid=aelKOpgNgUEQ&refer=us) But this looks like the sort of indecision brought about by internal confusion about whose hand holds which levers … and jerky knees. There’s “apparently”:http://www.forbes.com/business/feeds/afx/2005/06/01/afx2068023.html been some sort of confirmation of this in a China Daily editorial that acknowledges that ‘unilateral action’ (China’s?) is ‘not constructive’. There’s every reason to think we’ve seen only the opening moves in this game.
Peter Gallagher is student of piano and photography. He was formerly a senior trade official of the Australian government. For some years after leaving government, he consulted to international organizations, governments and business groups on trade and public policy.
He teaches graduate classes at the University of Adelaide on trade research methods and the role of firms in trade and growth and tweets trade (and other) stuff from @pwgallagher