US still has no plans to resume economic dialogue with China

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Por Saleha Mohsin and Christopher Condon, from Bloomberg

The secretary of the Treasury of USA, Janet Yellen, and his team have no plans to resume regular economic dialogue with the China that guided the ties between the two nations during the Bush and Obama administrations. For now, the suspension inherited from the Trump era must continue.

Although Yellen’s team and other departments are in contact with Chinese representatives, the expectation for now is not to restart formal high-level negotiations, according to people familiar with the situation.

A spokeswoman for the US Treasury did not immediately comment.

The lack of interest in reopening active channels under Barack Obama’s presidency reinforces evidence of the Joe Biden administration’s tougher stance on China, which points to a continued deterioration in ties between the world’s two largest economies.

Several US measures in recent days – such as the planned warning for US companies in Hong Kong, new import controls for the Xinjiang region and talk of a digital trade deal that would exclude the Beijing government – highlight that Biden plans to extend and even even delve into former President Donald Trump’s more confrontational approach.

Biden administration officials say the US strategy is a reaction to China’s own aggressive behavior. That stance will force tough choices for investors and businesses amid what Biden himself has described as a decisive battle of the 21st century — and it may surprise those hoping for a softer approach under the Democratic president.

On Monday, Yellen named China among the countries that threaten the “rules-based international order” built after World War II, along with Russia and Belarus. The statements came after a meeting of G20 finance ministers, while the Chinese delegation participated remotely, avoiding the possible first meeting between Yellen and Chinese officials.

In 2006, then Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, during the George W. Bush administration, launched the so-called Strategic Economic Dialogue, which brought together finance ministers, central banks and foreign ministry officials – among others – twice a year. This followed on as the Strategic and Economic Dialogue annually after Obama became president.

these conversations were suspended in 2018, after a 2017 Treasury Department group meeting under then-Secretary Steven Mnuchin, which did not result in a joint statement.

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