Romney's Comments on China Are 'Willful Attacks'



Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's caustic comments on China have resulted in a strong backlash from authorities in Beijing.

During his campaign in Virginia Thursday last week, Romney vowed once again to brand China as a currency manipulator on his first day as president should he win the White House.

China's state-owned Xinhua News Agency responded Friday stating that Romney's comments are "willful attacks."

"The presidential candidates should be mindful of going too far in bashing China, if they feel they must do so in order to win votes, because the specificity of their promises will leave them with few options but to follow through," Xinhua News Agency wrote in its published opinion piece.

China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs had published an official statement earlier on its website Sept. 1, 2012 requesting Romney to "stop making groundless accusations against China."

Industry watchers are however of opinion that Romney's view is not an extreme case.

"I don't see much of a policy divide between an Obama II and a Romney administration," Dr. Euan Graham, a senior fellow in the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies told Rigzone in an Oct. 19 interview.

"Most presidential candidates talk tough on China, but once in office the President's freedom of maneuver on U.S.-China relations tends to be more limited," Graham added.

Graham views are also echoed by other industry watchers. Steven Okun, who chairs the Asia-Pacific Council of American Chambers of Commerce, was quoted as explaining that Romney's statement was simply "campaign rhetoric" in an Oct. 9 article published in The Straits Times.

"I don't think there will be a difference between a Romney administration and a second-term Obama administration when it comes to China," Okun said.



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