Cornyn: U.S. Faces Unacceptable Barriers to China’s Markets

As Chairman of the Senate Finance Subcommittee on International Trade, Customs, and Global Competitiveness, I delivered the following opening remarks during a hearing to examine the challenges U.S. businesses, manufacturers, and service providers face when trying to access the Chinese market. Excerpts of my opening remarks are below, and video can be found here.

As China’s population grows and its economy continues to modernize, the Chinese market will continue to emerge as an attractive one for U.S. businesses in all sectors seeking the opportunity to serve the Chinese consumer.

But, unfortunately, while Chinese companies enjoy largely unfettered access to the United States market and an economy that is open to investment, U.S. companies are not afforded with reciprocity in this regard.

In many instances, China has simply used trade as a weapon, coercing U.S. companies to enter into joint ventures and other business agreements that require the company to hand over key technology and know-how, the so-called ‘secret sauce,’ simply in order to gain market access.

This practice has already begun to erode America’s technological advantage and undermine our defense industrial base.

China’s restrictive market is highly concerning, and multiple administrations have attempted to engage China’s leaders on their trade practices.

China will even send students to American colleges and universities for STEM-related degrees, only to have them return to China and further advance their goals. It’s part of their comprehensive strategy.

Unfortunately, many rounds of high-level diplomatic talks have not yielded progress – often resulting in commitments made with zero action.

One thing is clear: China’s market access reforms are too slow, and barriers still exist. Reciprocal treatment for U.S. companies should not be too much to ask.

It is my hope that today’s hearing will paint a clear picture of the problems that persist with access to China’s market, and that significant reforms will follow.

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