US Consulate of Chengdu, China closed

On July 27, 2020, the United States Consulate in Chengdu city of China was closed in response to the closure of Chinese consulate in Houston.

Highlights

The Chengdu consulate was an important outpost for the US as it covered a large swath of the country including controversial autonomous region of Tibet. The consulate was opened by the then Vice President George Bush in 1985.

US-China Tensions

The ongoing trade war between US and China has strained the tensions between US and China. The relations have deteriorated further recently after guilty plea of Singaporean national who admitted spying in the US for China.

Background

US and China are the most powerful economies in the world. In 1984, US became the third largest trading partner of China. The issues between US and China increased after China joining the World Trade Organization. After signing US-China Relations Act of 2000, China could join the WTO. China was then given the status of Most Favoured Nation in 2001.

After joining WTO, China began to violate WTO rules, especially by lowering tariffs to 10% by 2005. This affected US trade with other countries as several countries preferred China to the US for its lower tariffs. In 2018, Trump administration announced tariffs on solar panels and washing machines. This was when the trade war began between US and China.

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