China accuses U.S. of bullying over developing nation status

Wang Wenbin

10th June 2023 – (Beijing) China has accused the United States of bullying by attempting to strip it of the status of a developing country. This comes after the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed the “Ending China’s Developing Nation Status Act,” a bill that would require the State Department to pursue changing China’s status as a developing nation in international organisations.

Wang Wenbin, spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, called the move by the U.S. an attempt to contain China’s development. He told reporters at a regular press briefing in Beijing that the U.S. is not appreciating China’s development or achievements but rather playing another card to limit its progress.

According to Wang, whether China is a developing country or not is not up to the United States. China’s status as the largest developing country in the world is “well-grounded” in fact and has “a solid foundation” in international law, he added. China’s legitimate rights as a developing country will not be cancelled by politicians on Capitol Hill.

Wang also refuted the claim by some U.S. lawmakers that China uses its status as a developing country to evade its international responsibilities. He pointed out that China’s contributions to world economic growth, payment of UN dues, and peacekeeping assessments far exceed those of most developed countries.

The U.S. and China have been engaged in a trade war for the past few years, with both countries imposing tariffs on each other’s goods. The issue of China’s developing nation status is yet another point of contention between the two nations, and it remains to be seen how it will be resolved.

China has been classified by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) as a developing country since it joined the organisation in 2001. This classification entitles China to certain benefits, such as longer timeframes for implementing WTO agreements and special and differential treatment in some cases. However, the U.S. and other countries have argued that China is no longer a developing country and should not receive these benefits.