Trump must turn over financial records to House, judge rules

A federal judge in Washington ruled Monday against President Donald Trump in a financial records dispute with Congress.

US District Judge Amit Mehta, who was appointed by President Barack Obama, said T

rump cannot block a House subpoena of financial records. He sai

d the Democratic-led House committee seeking the information has said it belie

ves the documents would help lawmakers consider strengthening ethics and disclosure laws, among other things.

The committee’s reasons were “valid legislative purposes,” Mehta said, and it was not for hi

m “to question whether the Committee’s actions are truly motivated by political considerations.”

The decision comes amid a widespread effort by the White House and the preside

nt’s lawyers to refuse to cooperate with congressional requests for information and records.

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The US’ trade deficit stems from its extremely low natio

nal savings rate and has to be compensated by other countries’ national savings, which in tu

rn adds to the trade deficit. On the other hand, China’s efficiency in the manufacturing industry makes it a lar

ge exporter of manufactured goods to the US and helps it sustain its high savings rate.

A high growth rate means higher trade deficit for US

Given that the US economy is driven by domestic demand, consumpt

ion in particular, instead of exports, a high rate of ec

onomic growth will widen the trade deficit, as it would have to import more products than it exports. In such a sit

uation, the implementation of large-scale infrastructure construction projects would further increase the trade deficit.

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Separately, on the same day, the US Commerce Department

said it would be adding Huawei and its 70 affiliates to an Entity List, which will ban the compan

y from buying parts and components of US companies without prior government approval.

Gao Feng, spokesman for the Ministry of Commerce, said at a briefing that the con

cept of national security “should not be used as a tool for trade protectionism”.

“China strongly opposes other countries imposing unilateral sanctions on Chinese entities,” Gao said.

He called on the US to stop its wrongful behavior and make more efforts to create conditions for normal international trade cooperation.

Huawei has been increasing its 5G commercial contracts worldwide, with more countries giving the com

pany a vote of confidence. But it is facing security allegations from the US, which Huawei has said are unfounded.

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“Learning to work together in an orderly, high trust

level, and supported by diverse interest groups will prevent conflicts among stakeholders in the South China Sea,” Santarita said.

Scientists from China and other countries involved in the Belt and Road Initiative will work together to enhance scientifi

c and technological cooperation in disaster prevention and mitigation, according to a joint declaration.

He said Asia’s emphasis on “respect for authority, respect for the environment and the discipli

ne to control the use of resources” will also see Asian leaders pursuing a more eco-friendly dev

elopment path and honor their commitments to the Paris climate agreement.

“If there is harmony, discipline, stability and the primacy of family and com

munity over the individual, then any problem can be easily addressed,” Santarita said.

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he premier attached great importance to such measur

asures as reducing the rate of the value-added tax, increasing the

tax exemption for research costs and reforming individual income tax.

The measures should not only ease the tax burden for manufacturing com

panies but also reduce taxes for construction enterprises, which provide a great num

ber of jobs, Li said, adding that all industries should be covered by the benefits of tax cuts.

Li pledged more efforts to urge government departments and State-owned e

nterprises to pay off their debts so that the effects of tax reduction are not diminished.

The government will take further measures to deepen reform and opening-up, en

courage innovation and entrepreneurship and promote fair competition, Li said, adding that com

panies should also seize the opportunity to promote high-quality growth.

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The company will consider adding employees, resear

rch and field development resources to expand in the Chinese market over the coming years, he said.

Ministry of Commerce spokesman Gao Feng said last month that the t

wo countries’ negotiating teams are hashing out the text of a deal, including an enfo

rcement mechanism, based on mutual respect and benefit. Both countries, the world’s two biggest eco

nomies, have been intensifying their consultations and aiming to break the deadlock in a timely manner.

In the ninth round of trade consultations, negotiators discussed tec

hnology transfers, protection of intellectual property rights, non-tariff measures, the servi

ce sector, agriculture, trade imbalances and enforcement mechanisms.

Trade between China and the US amounted to 815.86 billion yuan ($121.7 billion) i

n the first quarter of the year, an 11 percent year-on-year decline, according to the General Administration of Cus

toms. In March, Sino-US trade climbed 0.1 percent to 291.35 billion yuan, according to the administration.

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He described the Belt and Road as a grand and peace

ful initiative, and credited the initiative for connecting countries from different regions, with different nationalities and cultures.

The BRI will provide a strong impetus for global economic growth and prosperity, he added.

Switzerland supports the BRI and commits to promoting the initiative in Europe, Maurer said.

He added that the country hopes to deepen bilateral cooperation in trade, investment and innovation with the initiative’s framework.

China and Portugal signed a series of cooperation documents on Monday — includin

g a framework agreement on third-party market cooperation — to strengthen their bilateral ties.

President Xi Jinping and Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sou

sa witnessed the signing of the documents in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

In talks with Rebelo de Sousa, Xi said China and Portugal are important strategic partn

rs for each other, with great convergence in their interests and strong complementary aspects in their economies.

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Xi added that the two countries should jointly prom

mote the building of the Asia-Pacific free trade zone and maintain the multilateral trading system.

He said China and Latin American countries should support each other, make full use

of their complementary advantages and achieve win-win cooperation. The two sides should pursue comm

on development and jointly build a community with a shared future for China and Latin America, Xi added.

The Chilean president said the Belt and Road Initiative, put forward by Xi, has show

n the glorious history of the ancient Silk Road and promoted exchanges between different cultures in the new era.

Chile supports the building of the Belt and Road, and it hopes t

o learn from China’s experience in innovative and green development, he said.

Pinera said Chile, which is dedicated to maintaining multilateralism and the multilateral t

rading system, would like to enhance coordination with China on regional and multilateral affairs.

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Regarding the second Belt and Road Forum for Intern

ational Cooperation, to be held in Beijing on Thursday through Saturday, S

ong said the ministry will help deepen economic and trade cooperation with other coun

tries. “China will build more free trade zones with countries that are willing to do so,” Song added.

“As for the existing free trade zones, we will reduce administrative barriers in trade

and investment and push the formation of a big Belt and Road marketplace.”

While some critics have argued that the initiative will lead countries i

nto debt traps, Song said debt can be solved through joint efforts to promote the devel

opment of BRI economies. “Even though some countries may have high debt levels, as their pace of indus

trialization, urbanization and modernization accelerates, their debts will gradually decrease.”

Joe Kaeser, president and CEO of Siemens AG, said, “If an initiative like the BRI unifies more than two-thirds of the global

population, it will create massive infrastructure and economic movement that will build its own rules.”

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He said seeing is believing and he welcomes the stude

nts to visit China in the future.Kendra Le, a Niles North freshman, was thrilled about Xi’s response letter, the Chicago Tribune reported.

“I was surprised, very surprised,” Le was quoted in the report as say

ing. “It was an honor to receive a letter from him. It was really nice getting a letter from him.”

The report also said that Zhao Jian, the Chinese consul general in Chicago, personally

delivered the letter to a gathering of students enrolled in Chinese classes at Niles North on April 3.

Serena Meyers, a Niles North senior taking her first year of Chinese after thr

ee terms of Spanish, was not only happy to receive the response, but also ple

ased at how the Chinese leader made an effort to answer the questions her classmates posed.

“I was absolutely surprised,” she told the Chicago Tribune. “He has a lot to do and it was a

n honor he wrote back to us.”The Niles North High School began offering Mandarin courses in 2008.

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