BEIJING, Aug 29 (Reuters) – US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo discussed concerns about restrictions on American companies including Intel (INTC.O) and Micron Technology (MU.O) at a meeting between the two countries and Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao on Monday . It was also agreed to start exchanging information on export controls.
According to a brief comment from Raimondo and the Commerce Ministry, the pair also discussed China’s recent restrictions on gallium and germanium exports in wide-ranging and candid talks that lasted more than two hours, followed by a two-hour lunch.
Raimondo wants to address concerns from US companies struggling to operate in China. “We deliver. We will have this formal communication,” she said at a meeting with business officials.
She is the latest official in the Biden administration, who is traveling to Beijing to strengthen communications, particularly on business and defense, as economic tensions between the world’s two largest economies threaten to shake business ties.
Raimondo told reporters that she raised concerns with her Chinese counterpart about China’s effective ban on buying Micron memory chips.
Shares of Micron rose 1.9% and Intel 0.4% on Monday afternoon in New York, following news first reported by Reuters.
Raimondo’s visit, which follows recent visits by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Secretary of State Antony Blinken, is being closely watched in Washington by Republican China-hawks who want President Joe Biden to take a more aggressive stance on China.
Republican Senator Marsha Blackburn tweeted Monday: “Communist China wants to destroy America. Minister Raimondo must stand up to our greatest adversary.”
As part of the talks, Washington and Beijing also agreed on a new formal working group on trade issues and information-sharing on export control enforcement, the US Commerce Department said.
Launching the exchange would provide a “platform to reduce misunderstandings about US national security policy,” Raimondo said, adding, “We do not compromise or negotiate on national security issues.” Point.”
The first face-to-face export control information-sharing meeting on the US side on Tuesday will be chaired by Deputy Secretary of Export Control Matthew Axelrod at the Ministry of Commerce in Beijing, Raimondo added. A senior official said the exchange will meet at least once a year, stressing it is not a political dialogue but a two-way effort to answer questions about how export controls work.
“We are not negotiating what our policy will be,” the official added.
China has criticized US efforts to block China’s access to advanced semiconductors through export controls, but Raimondo said these are not up for debate.
The White House this month began banning some US investments in sensitive technologies in China and plans to soon complete sweeping export restrictions on advanced semiconductors in October.
Earlier this year, Raimondo said more than 200 Chinese companies had been placed on a US export control list, repeatedly reiterating she would not hesitate to use the power if necessary.
The new trade working group will bring together U.S. and Chinese government officials and private sector officials “to seek solutions to trade and investment issues and advance U.S. trade interests in China,” Commerce said in a statement after the two officials met .
The working group will meet twice a year at the vice ministerial level, with the United States hosting the first meeting in early 2024.
The United States and China also agreed to convene subject matter experts from both sides for technical discussions “to strengthen the protection of trade secrets and confidential business information,” Raimondo said.
Reporting by David Shepardson in Beijing. Additional text by Susan Heavey in Washington. Edited by Chris Sanders, Mike Harrison and Matthew Lewis
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