Snubbing China, Canada cozies up to US

Source:Global Times Published: 2018/3/29 23:11:55

The Canadian Prime Minister’s Office said Tuesday that the government is bringing forward new regulations to crack down on countries that dump their steel and aluminum in foreign markets at unfairly cheap prices. Western media indicated China will be on the crackdown list. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently named China when talking about steel and aluminum dumping. Canada is acting like US President Donald Trump pulled it up on stage to be the straight man for the US.

Trump’s announcement of tariffs on steel and aluminum imports earlier this month seems to have freaked out Canada, the US’ No. 1 source of steel and aluminum. When Washington considered exempting Canada from the tariff list, Ottawa appeared so excited as if it was willing to kneel down to show its gratitude. Canada may be trying to cement the exemption by accusing China of dumping.

Canada’s steel imports from China only make up 9.8 percent of its total imports, with nearly no aluminum imports from China. In fact, Canada is more like a US colony economically, and half of its trade is with the US.

Meanwhile, China is Canada’s second largest trading partner, with the fastest growth in trade. The two countries enjoy sound trade ties and have no major disputes. But by following the US suit, Canada is acting like a crafty merchant.

Chinese people used to hold full respect for Western countries. But as their exchanges grow, these countries begin unveiling their selfish and cunning nature.

But Ottawa isn’t necessarily committed to being a US pawn in pressuring China over trade. A self-seeking and greedy Canada is unlikely to deny itself a market as booming as China. Eventually Ottawa will choose to play up to the US and meanwhile maintain its relations with China in a bid to maximize its gains.

It will be more remotely workable if the US wants to rope in the EU to pressure China. The bloc has no big difference in its trade with the US and China, and hence doesn’t depend heavily on the US. The EU may chime in over issues concerning itself, such as intellectual property, but it has its own logic to work out its problems with China.

More importantly, the issue of trade is simply a matter of who benefits. Canada and the EU will harvest far more from cooperating with China than uniting against China. There is no way for Washington to pull these countries together to go against China.

We despise the way Canada vacillates between China and the US, and won’t readily let this go. Beijing should take punitive measures against Ottawa’s actions that undermine the interests of Chinese business, sending a warning to others.

China’s Ministry of Commerce will figure out the most effective way to carry out the punishment. We have professional teams to cope with small countries of this kind.