The Chinese Ministry of Commerce has warned the United States after US Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer formally initiated an investigation into China's intellectual property practices under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. "Beijing will take all appropriate measures to safeguard its legitimate rights and interests," the Ministry said.
The USTR issued a statement "The investigation will seek to determine whether acts, policies, and practices of the Government of China related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation are unreasonable or discriminatory and burden or restrict US commerce."
The US was warned by the Chinese Ministry that if it fails to respect basic facts and multilateral trade rules and takes measure that harm bilateral economic and trade relations, the country will not sit by silently.
"China will definitely not sit by, but take all appropriate measures to resolutely safeguard its legitimate rights and interests,” the Ministry said.
"The United States should treasure the current sound Sino-US economic and trade ties and cooperation momentum. Any US trade protectionism move will surely damage bilateral ties and the interests of companies from both countries," Global Times quoted Chinese Ministry of Commerce as saying.