Romney's China policy could trigger trade war with 'fastest-growing' market for US exports

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Washignton, Oct. 11 (ANI): US Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has promised to get tough on China to help American workers if elected to the White House, but his plans could backfire.

Romney has said that, on his first day in office, he will designate China as a currency manipulator, a step no administration has taken against any country for 18 years.

That could, eventually, lead to tariffs punishing China for policies that Americans believe unfairly keep Chinese products cheap, hurting US manufacturers.

According to the Herald Sun, tariffs could trigger a trade war with a country that is the fastest-growing market for US exports. Even if they don't, the designation would instantly set back relations with Asia's emerging superpower.

The US seeks Chinese cooperation on international hot spots, such as North Korea and Iran, and wants to narrow differences over how to handle maritime territorial disputes in East Asia, the report said.

Given the potential repercussions, some foreign policy experts doubt Romney would carry out the currency threat.

Romney has also taken aim at Obama's 'pivot' to Asia, a strategy of deploying more forces and shoring up US alliances there, in part to counter China's military buildup, the report added.

In a speech this week, Romney said China's recent assertiveness was 'sending chills through the region'.

He said the pivot is under-resourced and has alienated US allies elsewhere. He outlined plans to expand US naval power - although it's unclear how he'd pay for it since he also wants to slash government spending, it said. (ANI)