Japan urged China on Tuesday to alter trade practices that it considers unfair, such as imposing tariffs on auto parts that are as high as those on assembled cars, and expanding its list of hazardous chemicals on short notice to effectively block exports of items that contain them.
The government’s 2006 Report on the WTO Inconsistency of Trade Policies by Major Trading Partners points out 27 Chinese trade practices considered problematic, including enforcement of antidumping measures and failure to crack down on pirated and counterfeit items.
Japan has requested that China lower to 10 percent its planned 25 percent tariff on auto parts, scheduled to take effect in July, if the value of imported auto parts exceeds 60 percent of the assembled vehicle’s price. The 25 percent tariff is the same as that levied on finished cars.
On March 30, the United States and European Union filed a joint complaint with the World Trade Organization over China’s “unfair” treatment of American and European auto parts.
Japan has also questioned the compatibility of Chinese regulations on hazardous materials with international trade rules, because only foreign firms are required to pay $10,000 in commissions to Chinese authorities per shipment of items containing the listed chemicals.
China added 158 chemicals to the list Dec. 28 and imposed the new regulations on an expanded number of items starting Jan. 1, forcing some foreign companies to halt exports to China of goods containing the materials, Japanese officials said.
The newly added chemicals include chloroform, trichloroethylene and dichloromethane, which are widely used in industry, according to the report.
It cites a total of 112 unfair trade practices, including the 27 involving China. Thirty-five unfair practices are attributed to the U.S., 11 to the EU and 21 to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
Japan continued to label as unfair a U.S. law known as the Byrd Amendment, despite a recent decision by Congress to repeal the law, because it will remain in force until Oct. 1, 2007.
The report also accuses Taiwan of maintaining higher connection fees for Japanese Internet service providers.