Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Friday he hopes President Donald Trump’s upcoming meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping will result in a commitment toward the two countries working collaboratively.
“What I would hope would come out would be a commitment to start abiding by the rules and a commitment to working collaboratively to help reduce our deficit,” Ross told Fox News’ “Fox and Friends” program.
Trump on Thursday tweeted that the session will be a “very difficult one” because “we can no longer have massive trade deficits and job losses.”
Friday, Trump plans to sign two executive orders aimed at reshaping U.S. trade policy, aiming the orders at foreign trade abuses. The signings come a week before Trump will meet with the Chinese leader.
Ross told Fox News that the first order will commission the Commerce Department to perform a 90-day study, “country by country, of the causes for our deficits with them.”
“As you know, we have $500 billion of total deficit,” Ross said. “This will be a real analytical pinpointing so it can form the basis of policy decisions. For the first time, there will be a systemic analysis of the problem, so that we can have very detailed and very accurate solutions.”
The research wille result in a public report, said Ross, as will Trump’s responses.
The second executive order will strengthen the nation’s anti-dumping rules, in hopes of slowing how China and other nations dump their products onto the international market a lower rates than U.S. companies can match.
“What the second order does is it corrects the problem we’ve had in collecting the anti-dumping duties,” Ross said. “There are $3 million worth of duties that have never been collected, because they set up straw man importers that don’t have any financial substance. By the time the case ends, there is nobody against whom you can asses the fine.”
The order will require that letters of credit, insurance company bonds, or cash be put up by companies, so that fines can be assessed and levied for dumping, said Ross.