China says there will be 'no winner' in global trade war
Jul 26, 2018, 05:32
Ramaphosa was hosting the president of the People's Republic of China, Xi Jinping, who began his state visit at the Union Buildings in Pretoria ahead of the BRICS meet on Wednesday.
"A global trade war should be rejected because there will be no victor", said Xi, who oversees the world's second-largest economy, and whose nation is dominant in the BRICS bloc. South Africa's biggest city of Johannesburg is set to welcome the heads of Brazil, Russia, India, and China.
Chinese President Xi Jinping called on Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) to reject protectionism.
The agreements which are set to be signed between emerging markets at the Brics Summit under way in Sandton, north of Johannesburg, are likely to benefit poor South Africans.
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At the same time, European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker is meeting with Trump on Wednesday at the White House to try and de-escalate the looming trade war. "China will continue to develop itself with its door wide open".
It is our honest hope that other BRICS countries, African countries and other emerging markets and developing countries will forge strong partnerships with this initiative so that its benefits will reach more countries and their peoples, he said.
"China is the most important trade country in this coalition and is likely to offset the negative impact from greater U.S. protectionism through increased domestic stimulus", Madhur Jha, head of thematic research at Standard Chartered Bank, said in response to e-mailed questions.
"We are concerned by the rise in unilateral measures that are incompatible with World Trade Organisation rules and are anxious about the impact of these measures, especially on developing countries". But even South Africa - the continent's most industrialised economy but a tiny exporter of steel, aluminium and automobiles to the United States - is facing barriers.
South Africa's trade and industry minister Rob Davies said other investments planned by China included an expansion of electronics firm Hisense's local operations and a metallurgical complex in Limpopo province.
The Brics nations would "reiterate their own domestic agendas at this meeting as well as commit to more trade and investment among these countries", she said.
As the member hardest-hit by Trump's trade moves, China is looking to diversify its trade ties to mitigate fallout.
Governments and automakers are warning the move would come with dire consequences for the United States economy. The Fed has hiked interest rates twice this year and could jack the rate up twice more before year's end.
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Stocks fell sharply Wednesday as concerns over escalating trade tensions threatened to erase the week's gains. Investors fear an escalating trade war between the world's two biggest economies could hit global growth.
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