Fox's Trish Regan faces off with CGTN host Liu Xin over US-China trade war

Fox's Trish Regan squares off against Chinese TV host Liu Xin over US-China trade war

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Screenshot of Fox News segment.

Screenshot of Fox News segment.

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- After trading barbs over the U.S.-China trade war for weeks, FOX Business Network host Trish Regan faced-off with China Global Television Network's (CGTN's) Liu Xin in a live debate at 8 a.m. on Thursday morning Taiwan Time.

The debate, which was aired on the Fox Business show "Trish Regan Primetime," started off with Regan accusing Liu of being a member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), and Liu responding that she is not a member of the party but rather a private citizen. Regan then reminded viewers that CGTN itself is nevertheless run by the CCP.

Regan first asked Liu for her assessment of the current status of the trade talks. Liu responded by saying that unless the U.S. shows the Chinese government "respect and the willingness to talk without using outside pressure," the trade war could continue for a prolonged period.

The Fox News host brought up the topic of intellectual property rights by saying, "I think we can all agree it is never right to take something that is not yours." She then listed 13 cases in which Chinese companies were charged with intellectual property theft.

Regan then asked Liu how U.S. companies can operate in China "if they are at risk of having their property stolen?" Liu then replied by saying that many U.S. companies in China are profitable and "the great majority I believe plan to continue to invest in China and explore the Chinese market."

Liu said that Trump's tariffs make the future more uncertain, but she did not deny IP infringement, copyright issues, and theft of commercial secrets and that it is something "that has to be dealt with." She then claimed there is a consensus among the Chinese government and people that IP rights should be protected.

Liu claimed that it (IP theft) is "a common practice in every part of the world." She reasoned that although there are individual cases, it does not mean that "America is stealing or China is stealing."

Liu said that was why she wrote her rebuttal to Regan and said, "that this kind of blanket statement is really not helpful." Regan said it was not just "a statement" but multiple reports from the WTO.

Regan then asked Liu if it would be acceptable if the U.S. would require Huawei to share all of its technological advances, much as American companies are forced to transfer technology to China. Liu replied that if it was through cooperation, mutual learning, and if "you pay for the use of this IP of this high technology, it's absolutely fine."

Regan then highlighted that "you should pay for the acquisition." She said that "we all need to kind of play by the rules and play by those laws if we're going to have that kind of trust between each other."

Given that China is now the second largest economy in the world, Regan asked when China would stop referring itself as a "developing nation" and stop borrowing from the World Bank.

Liu replied by saying "it depends on how you define developing country." She said that based on per capita GDP, it is less than 1/6 that of the U.S. Nevertheless, she said China is trying to take a larger role by donating to the UN peacekeeping missions and giving out humanitarian aid because "we know we have to grow up."

Regan then brought up the issue of tariffs and said that in 2016 average tariff on U.S.-made goods in China was 9.9 percent, nearly three times what the U.S. was charging for Chinese-made goods. She asked, "What about if we got rid of all tariffs?"

Liu said it must be done via mutual consensus and should be based on a multilateral process and rules, rather than bilateral negotiations.

Regan retorted by saying that Section 301 of the U.S. Trade Act of 1974 included a rule that enables the U.S. to impose tariffs to punish infringements of intellectual property.

Lastly, Regan asked Liu to define state capitalism. Liu replied by saying it is "socialism with Chinese characteristics" in which market forces are expected to play the deciding role.

Liu defined "Chinese characteristics" as state enterprises, but said they are playing a smaller role "maybe."

Liu claimed that 80 percent of employees in China are employed by "private companies" and that 80 percent of exports are produced by "private companies." She then claimed that 65 percent of technological innovations are generated by "private companies."

She claimed it is a socialist economy with Chinese characteristics, but not everything is state-controlled, and that it is actually "mixed, very dynamic, and open."

The "debate" then ended rather abruptly and awkwardly with Regan emphasizing that China should "probably keep being open" and that it would lead to greater prosperity for both sides and "then you get a win-win."