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U.S. Widens China Trade Fight to Shipbuilding Which It Lost Decades Ago

Posted on May 8, 2024

The U.S. last month began an investigation of China’s dominant shipbuilding industry, in a move signaling increasing pressure on China that extends beyond technology and into the manufacturing sector.

Following a petition from five labor unions, Katherine Tai, the U.S. trade representative (USTR), announced on April 17 the so-called 301 probe into China’s practices in maritime equipment, logistics and shipbuilding. A public hearing is set for May 29. This marks the first industry-specific investigation by the Biden administration under Section 301 of the U.S. Trade Act of 1974 — a tool that allows the government to enforce trade agreements and impose sanctions on nations violating norms of international commerce.

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