The right way to handle trade frictions is to make the cake of cooperation bigger and find solutions acceptable to both sides through dialogue, said Zhang, who once served as Chinese ambassador to the US. In January, he took his first foray into tariff measures by placing charges on imported washing machines and solar panels.
A USA move on tariffs risks provoking retaliation, particularly from Beijing.
The document is critical of previous administrations for not "asserting sovereign authority" and continuing to "passively adhere to outdated and under-performing trade deals and allow [ing] global bureaucracies to undermine United States interests".
The metal tariffs could end up doing most harm to U.S. allies like South Korea, Japan, Germany, Taiwan and Brazil.
A visiting senior Chinese official and his USA hosts have agreed that the two countries should settle their trade disputes by cooperation rather than confrontation, so as to secure the healthy development of bilateral economic and trade ties.
Liu also met Thursday with White House economic adviser Gary Cohn, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.
Canada - the biggest foreign supplier of steel to the USA - said the measures were unacceptable while the European Union vowed to "react firmly" with World Trade Organization-compliant countermeasures in the next few days.
Beijing's focus has been on two much broader issues.
Whether it represents the start of a global trade war is likely to depend on the reaction from China, which Trump has repeatedly slammed for killing American jobs with its unfair trade practices. It was unveiled at the start of the National People's Congress, an annual gathering of Chinese lawmakers in Beijing. And Chinese officials want to preserve the overall ability of Chinese companies to continue investing in the United States.
Through the policy agenda, and as part of his trade offensive, Trump has also said he expects to impose a 25% tariff on foreign-made steel and 10% for aluminum in response to the national security investigation he initiated last spring. It pledges to prevent Beijing from disrupting global trade.
China's "moderate" defence spending rises in the past few years have been to make up for past deficiencies and the country's military will not threaten anyone, a senior diplomat said on Sunday ahead of the release of the defence budget.
The ministry said Beijing has satisfied its trade obligations and appealed to Washington to settle market access and subsidy disputes through negotiation.
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