February 9, 2000
- China will reduce its tariffs from a current average of 25.3% to a final
average of 10.6% by January 1, 2005.
Trading Rights and Distribution
- Currently, U.S. companies’ ability to do business in China is strictly
limited because the right to engage in trade (importing and exporting) is
restricted to a small number of companies that receive specific
authorization or who import goods to be used in production. This limits U.S.
exports. China has agreed that any entity will be able to import most
products, including fish, into any part of China. This commitment is
phased-in over the three-year period with all entities being permitted to
import and export at the end of the period.
- China -- which generally prohibits companies from distributing imported
products or providing related distribution services -- will permit foreign
enterprises to engage in the full range of distribution services.
These rights will be phased in over a three-year period for almost all
products, including fish. (See separate papers on distribution services and
- China has committed to a strong product-specific safeguard that allows the
United States to address import surges. Specifically, the safeguard allows
the United States to restrain increasing imports from China that cause or
threaten to cause market disruption for 12 years after accession. After
that, current U.S. safeguard provisions -- Section 201 -- remain available
to address increasing imports.
- The Agreement explicitly permits the United States to continue to use its
current non-market economy methodology for 15 years after China’s
accession to the WTO.
- China has agreed not to apply or enforce export performance, local
content, and similar requirements as a condition on importation or
- To alleviate the uncertainty associated with China’s inconsistent
application, refund, and waivers of its 17% VAT tax, China has agreed to
apply all taxes and tariffs uniformly to both domestic and foreign
Thursday, October 14, 2004 PM