CHINA TRADE STATUS RENEWED
WASHINGTON — Chinese imports into the U.S. will continue receiving preferential tariffs, since the House on Thursday evening voted to renew China’s normal trade relations status.
The vote was needed because China hasn’t yet joined the World Trade Organization. When that occurs, China will receive permanent normal trade relations status under a bill Congress passed last year.
As in past years, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R., Calif.) sponsored a resolution that would disapprove the President’s annual renewal of China’s trade status. The resolution failed on a 169-259 vote.
During debate, lawmakers revisited long-standing arguments over China and whether it’s better for the U.S. to engage the country economically or cut off its trade breaks to punish the country for its poor human rights and worker rights record.
Once China joins the WTO, such an annual congressional scrutiny of the country’s trade status will end. China’s entry into the WTO has been pending for more than a year, as it works to meet requirements for entering the 141-country global trading body. U.S. officials expect China to finally join by the end of the year or early next year.