The interagency Trade Policy Coordination Committee ("TPCC") held a hearing on China's compliance with its WTO commitments on November 8. The hearing was part of the TPCC's preparation of its annual report to Congress. A representative of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative ("USTR") and 17 private sector organizations either testified at the hearing or submitted written comments.
According to USTR, the TPCC has found that U.S. companies continue to experience problems in areas such as intellectual property rights, industrial policies, trade rights, and agriculture. U.S. companies are generally concerned that China has re-emphasized the government's role in the economy. Despite these concerns, USTR noted a few signs indicating China's progress toward WTO compliance. Recently, China has committed to negotiate a high-standard bilateral investment treaty with the United States and has created a new free trade zone. Claire E. Reade, Assistant USTR for China Affairs, emphasized at the hearing that "if China is going to deal successfully with its economic challenges at home, it must at a minimum reduce the role of the state in planning the economy, reform state-owned enterprises and eliminate preferences for national champions."