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Chinese manufacturers find the going tough with plunging US orders

Chinese manufacturers find the going tough with plunging US orders
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Faced with plunging US orders, surgical glove maker Ren Jiding is hunting for new markets amid Chinese government calls to reduce reliance on the...

Beijing: Faced with plunging US orders, surgical glove maker Ren Jiding is hunting for new markets amid Chinese government calls to reduce reliance on the United States. But none can absorb the 60 per cent of his sales that went to American customers last year.

"Other countries import much less than the United States," said Ren, a co-owner of Hongyeshangqin Medical Science and Technology Co., Ltd. in the eastern city of Zibo. From medical products to smartphone chips to soybeans, Beijing is responding to President Donald Trump's tariff hikes by pushing companies to trade more with other countries. But there are few substitutes for the United States as an export market and source of technology for industries including telecom equipment makers Chinese leaders are eager to develop.

Beijing has announced tariff cuts and other changes while rejecting U.S. demands to scale back plans such as "Made in China 2025," which calls for state-led creation of Chinese champions in robotics, biotech and other fields.

American leaders say those violate Beijing's market-opening promises and might erode U.S. industrial leadership. The response highlights the cost the ruling Communist Party is willing to pay in lost sales and jobs to stick to plans that are fuelling conflict with Washington, Europe and other trading partners.

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