Climate Regulations, Human Rights and Currency Manipulation Must Be Addressed By China

trumka2AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka made the following statement regarding Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to the U.S.:

Climate change deals between the U.S. and China will unfortunately be undermined by the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) unless the TPP explicitly incorporates climate change provisions into its rules. There is no indication that TPP will properly address issues such as carbon emissions, so a likely impact of the TPP is a flight of jobs and carbon output to Vietnam and other TPP countries. This will undermine jobs and climate policy in both the U.S. and China.

Another alarming concern with China is the deterioration of human and worker rights under the current Chinese government. Workers need protections now more than ever and it is unacceptable that this government treats labor disputes as security threats.

China clearly fails to play by the rules in the global economy. China’s continued currency manipulation artificially lowers the wages of Chinese workers and manufacturing costs in China. This creates an unfair trade advantage that has already cost millions of American jobs and closed thousands of American factories. 

With Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations continuing, now is the time for the Administration to insist upon currency rules in the TPP that can and will be enforced through trade sanctions. Those rules would also bind China if it ever joined such a pact. We must set global economic rules that ensure a fair playing field.

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