US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen meets Chinese language Prime Minister Li Qiang

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen arrived in Beijing on July 6, 2023 for her first visit under the Biden administration.

Mark Schiefelbein | Afp | Getty Images

BEIJING – US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen defended US measures to protect her national security in remarks prepared for a meeting with Chinese Prime Minister Li Qiang.

“The United States will need to take targeted action in certain circumstances to protect its national security,” Yellen said in prepared remarks on Friday.

“And in those cases, we can disagree,” she said.

Among other things, the US announced sweeping export controls in October that limit the ability of Chinese companies to develop advanced semiconductors.

This week, China’s Commerce Ministry said that companies in China that want to export two metals for making chips will have to apply for licenses from August 1. The ministry said Thursday the measures were not targeted to any specific country and it had informed the US and Europe before the public announcement.

“We should not allow disagreements to lead to misunderstandings that unnecessarily worsen our bilateral economic and financial ties,” Yellen said in her prepared remarks.

She said there are “major global challenges” on which the US and China “need to work together and show leadership.”

Yellen was scheduled to meet the Chinese prime minister on Friday, the second day of her four-day trip to China.

She previously met with former Vice Premier Liu He and former Governor of the People’s Bank of China Yi Gang. A Finance Ministry official said the meeting lasted an hour and 15 minutes, longer than planned.

“They discussed the global economic outlook as well as the respective economic outlook for the United States and China,” the official said.

Her trip follows US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s high-profile visit to Beijing last month and comes at a time when China’s economic growth has been slowing.

According to state media, Li met with economic experts on Thursday to discuss growth trends and proposals for economic work. According to the report, Li said that the complex global political and economic situation has greatly affected China’s development.

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