China slams US, EU protectionism against nation’s car exports

China slammed protectionist actions by the US and the EU against Chinese car exports on Tuesday, saying that the leapfrog development of China's vehicle industry has provided cost-effective products with high quality to the world.

Division of labor and mutually beneficial collaboration are distinctive features of the auto industry chain, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said during a regular press conference. 

According to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, in January, China exported 443,000 vehicles, up by 47.4 percent year-on-year, maintaining rapid growth. The numbers reflected the high-quality development and strong innovation of China's manufacturing industry, Mao noted.

Every one in three exported automobiles from China is an electric model, which contributes significantly to the world's green and low-carbon transition, the spokesperson said.

Protectionist measures taken by relevant countries against China to turn normal trade activities into security and ideological issues, build "small yards with high fences" in the name of "de-risking," and attempt to "trip others up" instead of "running faster" may seem like a win, but they will actually lead to a loss of one's own long-term development and encumber the progress and prosperity of the world, Mao said.

China believes in solidarity, cooperation and openness rather than division, confrontation and isolation. We believe it's important to accommodate the interests of others while pursuing one's own, work for common development while seeking one's own development, create a world-class, market-oriented and law-based environment for global economic and trade cooperation, and make economic globalization more inclusive and beneficial to all, Mao noted.

US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo issued a warning over the potential national security threats posed by electric vehicles (EVs) manufactured in China, reported Bloomberg in January. This came as the Biden administration considered implementing further tariffs on vehicles imported from the Asian nation.

The rapid growth of China's auto industry and its expanding export scale are bound to draw attention from other countries. Other Chinese industries have been affected by trade protectionism during their export processes, Cui Dongshu, secretary-general of the China Passenger Car Association, told the Global Times on Tuesday.

The EU has launched several investigations against China. Among these, the European Commission is probing a subsidiary of the Chinese rail company CRRC to ascertain if it received subsidies that unfairly allowed it to undercut European competitors. Additionally, an anti-subsidy investigation into Chinese EVs commenced in October 2023.

The investigations into China's auto exports by the US and the EU are not conducted from a perspective of global interest but originate from hegemonic and unilateral thinking, said Gao Lingyun, an expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences who closely follows China-US trade issues, on Tuesday.

China's opening-up has provided opportunities for developing countries worldwide. China's participation in global governance initiatives is based on common values, not just its own interests. This is China's attitude toward globalization, Gao noted.

China’s clean energy growth to accelerate global power source transformation: FM

China's remarkable progress in the clean energy sector in recent years has provided practical resolution in tackling global climate change, and will accelerate international power source transformation, said the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Friday, calling on the world to work together in addressing challenges of climate change. 

Wang Wenbin, spokesperson for the FM, made the remarks during a press conference while responding to media enquiries on China's prospect of realizing scheduled wind and solar power development goal six years in advance, and that 60 percent of global electricity generated by renewable power source will come from China by 2028. 

Wang stressed that power source transformation is the only way to achieve the goal of the Paris Agreement and a future of green development and sustainability. "China's clean energy sector has grown to a global leader from a follower in a short time, and made significant contribution to the world's low carbon development." 

By the end of 2023, China's capacity of renewable power generators surpassed half of total power generators. China's new-energy vehicle output and sales hit 9.587 million and 9.495 million in 2023, increasing by 35.8 percent and 37.9 percent year-on-year, respectively. The two figures both accounted for over 60 percent of global volume, and have been keeping the first place for nine consecutive years, said Wang. 

International Energy Agency's Renewables 2023 showed that China's acceleration in renewables was extraordinary. In 2023, China commissioned as much solar PV as the entire world did in 2022, while its wind additions also grew by 66% year-on-year, said the report. 

However, Wang emphasized that the world should work together in achieving the same goal by abandoning protectionism, unilateralism and para-politicization. 

In regard to this, China has actively participated in the construction of clean energy infrastructure in other countries such as solar, wind and hydro power plants in United Arab Emirates, Morocco, South Africa, and Pakistan. 

During the 28th meeting of the Conference of the Parties which ended in December 2023, all parties of the meeting highly agreed on China's concept and progress in low carbon transformation, and believed that China's practical solutions have important meaning in global green development, Wang stated. 

"China will stick to the strategy to foster a community of life for man and nature, conduct power source transformation steadily, and make greater contribution in tackling global climate change," said Wang.