Official Chinese narratives about the U.S.-China trade war have not included Chinese reflection or discussion of what role China’s own policies have played in creating trade tensions. Many of the concerns on structural issues, such as market access, intellectual property rights, forced technology transfer, and China’s industrial policies, are of common concern for the international community. Casting these concerns only in the U.S.-China bilateral context leads to narratives in China that accuse the U.S. of seeking to contain China’s rise. As China celebrates its 40th anniversary of reform and opening up, Chinese policymakers and academics are beginning to reflect on the need for further economic reforms. However, vested interests among various Chinese stakeholders make implementing these reforms increasingly complicated.


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