Yellen: ‘Open Trade and Investment’ with China Helps Us and Them ‘Gain’ — ‘Decoupling Would Be Disastrous’

During a portion of an interview with NPR on Thursday broadcast on Friday’s broadcast of NPR’s “Morning Edition,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen stated that “open trade and investment” with China is beneficial to both countries, but there are some areas where she has concerns and “We are concerned about overdependence on China.”

Yellen said, “I think decoupling would be disastrous. Trade and investment — open trade and investment, I think, is a win-win. Both sides gain. But there are areas where we have concerns. And, as I’ve made clear — and others in the administration have as well — we will certainly take actions, for example, to protect our national security. And we have put in place export controls, for example, on advanced semiconductors. We are concerned about overdependence on China. But the concern is broader if we have overdependence on any single country for critical goods that we need, whether it’s equipment related to dealing with health threats like the coronavirus, or it’s overdependence on goods like solar panels or rare earths or critical minerals that go into electric vehicle batteries. But I would refer to this as de-risking and not decoupling. We don’t seek to sever our trade and investment relations with China. That wouldn’t be desirable for us or for them.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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