Fri, Mar 09, 2018 - Page 7 News List

China skeptic tipped to replace Cohn

UNORTHODOX:Peter Navarro, who is the frontrunner to become Trump’s chief economic adviser, has argued against the ‘one China’ policy and for tariffs on imports

Reuters, WASHINGTON

“Indeed, with their bread now being buttered offshore, so-called ‘American’ organizations like the Business Roundtable and National Association of Manufacturers transformed from staunch critics of Chinese mercantilism into open, and often very aggressive, soldiers in the pro-China Lobby,” he wrote in Death by China.

“Unscrupulous Chinese entrepreneurs are flooding world markets with a range of bone-crushing, cancer-causing, flammable, poisonous, and otherwise lethal products, foods, and drugs,” he wrote.

Navarro’s economic views have been dismissed by most economists as “fringe” and “oddball,” although Trump has hailed him as a “visionary.”

He in 2006 emerged unheralded as a China commentator after years of writing about energy regulatory issues as a professor at the University of California-Irvine.

He and Ross in their campaign paper calculated that, had the US been able to eliminate its US$500 billion trade deficit in 2015, it would have bolstered the economy by 3.38 percentage points and produced a growth rate of 5.97 percent.

Those calculations were derided as “magical thinking” at the time by many economists, who said that the trade deficit is determined by the difference between saving and investment.

Rising imports were caused by less savings and not by “perfidious foreigners and incompetent trade negotiators,” as Trump has suggested, a report by the Peterson Institute for International Economics said at the time.

Trump has said that the US would emerge as a winner in any trade war, as its imports are so large that other countries would be forced to negotiate.

“Our jobs have been stolen from us, our businesses have been taken,” Trump told a news conference on Tuesday.

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