The Bush Adminstration on Friday cited China and Japan as among 37 nations with major barriers to U.S. goods, contributing to the $101-billion U.S. trade deficit last year.
It said in its annual report on Foreign Trade Barriers that China’s economic turn inward resulted in a 17% drop in imports from the United States last year. At the same time, U.S. imports from China rose 27%.
Joshua Bolten, general counsel at the trade office, said, however, that “the most significant trade barriers that the United States faces continue to be in the Japanese market.”
He told a news conference that many Japanese markets had been opened the past year--including those in superconductors, sound recordings, wood products and satellites--but others remained closed.
In addition, business practices there continued to make it hard for U.S. firms to break into Japanese markets.
U.S. Trade Representative Carla Anderson Hills said in a statement that despite global openings, many markets were still closed.
The barriers cited ranged from high tariffs and restrictive quotas to rules on investment and onerous standards and testing procedures designed to exclude foreign goods.