Over the coming years it is expected the US and China will play more games of ‘chicken’ – most likely over China’s creeping territorial expansion in disputed waters in the South China Sea as well as in maritime areas closer to America’s ally Japan. These incidents will increasingly risk the threat of military force, as the world’s longstanding superpower seeks to avoid ceding power in the Pacific to China. Appropriately enough, the two nations have been playing chicken over chicken too. Yes, poultry has been one of the chief trade disputes between them since 2010 when Beijing responded to US tariffs on Chinese tyres by imposing its own duties on American sales of chicken products in China (see WiC124). ThePaper.cn reports that the chicken wars go on with the Chinese Ministry of Commerce announcing in late August it will continue with countervailing duties on US white feather broiler imports for another five years. The duty will be about 4% and the ministry said the decision was prompted by complaints from the China Animal Husbandry Association. Meanwhile the US has filed another complaint with the WTO about the chicken tariff. The US Department of Agriculture says that the duty has had a malign impact on US poultry exports. It claims that in 2009 the country’s farmers sent 729 million pounds of chicken, turkey and eggs to the Chinese market, but in the wake of the duties that figure declined substantially to 260 million pounds in 2014.
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