Beijing: China, often criticised for taking away American jobs, on Wednesday reacted cautiously to the election of Donald Trump as President, saying it will work with the new US government to ensure steady development of bilateral ties to benefit people of both countries.
“We are also watching and following the election and we will work with new US government to ensure steady and sound development of bilateral relations and benefit people of the two countries,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a media briefing.
Preferring to wait for the official results, Kang said,“We hope the new US government will work with China for steady and sound development of bilateral relations. This will benefit the two countries and the entire world.”
China keenly watched the run-up to the election between Trump and Hillary Clinton as both promised to pursue strong policies against Beijing.
Chinese official commentaries reflecting public opinion favoured Trump as Clinton was widely regarded as someone who pursued a tough line against China with ‘Asia Pivot’ strategy under which 60% of American military assets would be deployed in the region to contain China.
Equally, there are apprehensions about Trump who branded China as a currency manipulator and promised tough measures against cheap Chinese imports into the US.
Trump had earlier claimed that Americans are living through the “greatest jobs theft” in the history of the world, saying US companies were moving out jobs to countries like China, Mexico and Singapore. The US and China have over $600 billion in annual trade with balance of trade heavily tilting towards Beijing.
Successive US leaders also criticised China for keeping its currency too low against the dollar to reap maximum benefits out of bilateral trade.
About trade ties under Trump, Kang said “we hope our relations can be mutually beneficial”.
Outlining how bilateral trade between the two nations grew from about $2 billion, he said unlike in the past there are several trade mechanisms like the Wold Trade Organisation (WTO) to address major trade issues between both nations. He added that the growth of China-US trade also benefitted the American people. PTI