Trade War: White House advisor lambastes China, 'there is no basis of trust' for new deal

Peter Navarro's harsh words for Beijing put a damper on possible trade negotiations ahead of G20 Summit in Argentina

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Peter Navarro

Peter Navarro (By Associated Press)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – On Nov. 9, Trump advisor and Director of the White House Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, Peter Navarro, spoke at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) about the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China.

Navarro emphasized that despite optimistic reports that trade negotiations may be re-opened at the upcoming G20 Summit this month, the Trump administration remains highly skeptical of Beijing’s willingness to commit to any potential agreements that may be drafted.

In Navarro’s address titled “Economic Security as National Security,” he boldly declared that there is simply no basis for trust with the Chinese government and that, even if a new deal is agreed upon, Beijing will probably violate the terms in short order.

Referring to the success of the Trump administration in creating new agreements with Mexico and Canada, and ongoing negotiations with the European Union and Japan, Navarro stated that the U.S. is ready and willing to negotiate with trustworthy partners.

However, in negotiations with Beijing, there is simply no basis for trust. Navarro mentioned China’s entrance to the WTO as one of the worst financial disasters of recent decades.

Since their admission to the WTO, China has consistently been a “serial violator” of nearly every rule laid out for WTO membership, says Navarro. China has also consistently resorted to theft in order to avoid R&D expenditures and to keep manufacturing output viable, says the White House advisor.

Navarro outlined “China’s Acts, Policies, and Practices of Economic Aggression” to explain the industrial policy of China, and why it presents a danger for the United States, as well as the developing world.


Screen grab from CSIS

He referred to China’s debt-trap diplomacy, calling Sri Lanka a “military outpost” and Malaysia as a “colony” of China.

Speaking on the future of any potential negotiations with Beijing, Navarro insisted that, if a deal happens, then it will be on Donald Trump’s terms. Navarro also warned Wall Street bankers and hedge fund managers lobbying on behalf of Beijing, to stand down and let the administration manage negotiations.

He even called this group of bankers and hedge fund managers “unregistered foreign agents” specifically mentioning Goldman Sachs, and characterized their pro-Beijing positions as harmful to the national security of the United States.

Ultimately, Navarro declared China’s economic and industrial policies as intrinsically and structurally opposed to the concept of free trade. Further, the leadership in Beijing consistently downplays its predatory policies and disingenuous acts.

“How can you make a deal with somebody, if they won’t even acknowledge your concerns?” Dealing with Beijing is like “Alice in Wonderland,” lamented Navarro.

To hear Navarro’s scathing criticisms of China’s economic policy and diplomatic conduct, see the following video from 30:00 to 45:00.