(Yicai Global) May 21 -- China and the United States aim to avoid trade wars, stop levying tariffs on each other, reduce the US trade deficit, and increase US exports of agricultural products and energy, according to a joint statement on bilateral economic and trade made in Washington on May 19.
Some experts expect the increase of agricultural imports from the US to help China to optimize its food structure.
"It is of great significance to take more active and effective measures to further increase the agricultural imports and diversify imports and product varieties, for enriching people's dining table and satisfying their demand for food," China News Service cited Yu Lu, deputy president of China Chamber of Commerce of Foodstuffs and Native Produce, as saying. In particular, as the middle-income group in China continues to grow, the demand for imports of healthy food is expanding,
Increasing agricultural imports from the US and other countries with higher agricultural productivity will contribute to a reduction in Chinese domestic agricultural product prices and benefit consumers, said Li Yong, deputy director of the expert committee of China Association of International Trade.
At present, China mainly imports agricultural products from the US, Brazil, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the European Union and Australia. The US has cheap and high-quality agricultural products, among which, beef and soybeans have the world’s top performance price ratio and stable supply capacity, Li added.
The expansion of the agricultural imports scale will bring about impacts on their Chinese counterparts to some extent, said Li Guoxiang, Research Fellow at Rural Development Institute of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, adding that it will help to force the adjustment of domestic agricultural structure and the development of green agriculture and high-quality agriculture.
Demand for imported agricultural products in China has been increasing in recent years. The country’s agricultural imports were USD12.6 billion last year, increasing 12.8 percent annually. Related imports rose a further 10.4 percent to USD32.0 billion in the first quarter this year.
Editor: William Clegg