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Tags: janet yellen | g7 | china | manufacturing | ev

Yellen: China's Excess Output Faces 'Wall of Opposition'

Yellen: China's Excess Output Faces 'Wall of Opposition'
Janet Yellen, Secretary of the Treasury, testifies before the House Ways and Means Committee, April 30, 2024, in Washington, D.C. (Aaron Schwartz/AP)

Thursday, 23 May 2024 08:54 AM EDT

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Thursday that she wants market-driven countries to present a "wall of opposition" to China over its state-driven industrial policies, a key issue she is pushing at a G7 finance meeting this week.

Yellen also told a news conference that she is looking for "general agreement on the concept" from G7 finance ministers and central bank governors on a plan to bring forward the earnings from some $300 billion in frozen Russian assets that could provide Ukraine with significant financial support beyond 2025.

The two topics are expected to dominate a finance ministers and central bank governors meeting in northern Italy on Friday and Saturday.

MANY CONCERNED

Yellen said that many countries beyond the G7 advanced industrial democracies were concerned about China's overinvestment in electric vehicles, solar products, semiconductors, steel and other strategic industries, including Mexico, India and South Africa.

Without changes in Chinese policy, including a shift from increasing production to boosting domestic demand, Yellen said market driven economies face a flood of cheap exports from China that will threaten the viability of their manufacturers.

She said she was not asking countries to mirror U.S. tariffs or closely coordinate their trade policy responses.

"But we need to stand together and send a unified message to China," Yellen said. "So they understand it's not just one country that feels this way, but that they face a wall of opposition to the strategy that they're pursuing."

She said the G7 officials would discuss their responses and concerns that they are presenting to Beijing.

Yellen's call for G7 unity on China comes just after the Biden administration announced steep new tariffs on Chinese EVs, batteries, solar panels and other products in a bid to protect U.S. investments to develop these industries at home. Some of these higher duties will start on Aug. 1.

Yellen called this week for the U.S. and Europe to respond to China's overinvestment in electric vehicles, solar products, semiconductors, steel and other key sectors in a "strategic and united way" to keep manufacturers viable on both sides of the Atlantic.

RUSSIAN ASSETS

Yellen said that if G7 ministers can agree on a concept for bringing forward the earnings on the frozen Russian assets, they will spend the time before a G7 leaders summit in Puglia in mid-June on refining the details.

She added that while a figure of $50 billion has been discussed, there have been no decisions on the size of a potential loan to Ukraine that would be backed by earnings of around $3.5 billion.

"This is an assured source of financing and it's important that Russia realize that we will not be deterred from supporting Ukraine for lack of resources," Yellen said.

The funding could sustain Ukraine beyond 2025, as Ukraine now has a $60 billion U.S. package of aid and about $50 billion from the EU.

G7 negotiators have been discussing for weeks how to best exploit some $300 billion worth of Russian financial assets, such as major currencies and government bonds, which were frozen shortly after Moscow invaded Ukraine in February 2022.

© 2024 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.


StreetTalk
U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Thursday it was important for G7 countries and other economies to show China that it faces a "wall of opposition" over its excess industrial capacity, which threatens a flood of cheap exports.
janet yellen, g7, china, manufacturing, ev
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2024-54-23
Thursday, 23 May 2024 08:54 AM
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