GUANGZHOU, China (Reuters) – As Washington and Beijing face off in a simmering trade dispute, Chinese exporters are expressing concerns about an escalation, although many say they expect the worst to be averted as negotiations continue.
In a survey of 135 Chinese exporters, including 84 from the Canton Trade Fair, China’s largest, and 51 from an electronics event in Hong Kong, 65 percent expressed some “worries” about a trade war.
Percent - Trade - War - Negotiators - US
But only 26 percent expected a “full-blown” trade war to play out as negotiators on the Chinese and U.S. sides draw up tariff lists that currently stand to affect some $100 billion in goods on both sides.
“The thunder is very loud,” said Stephen Chow, a senior manager at Provision, a flat-screen television maker from Guangzhou. “But the raindrops may be very small.” He added: “things won’t end up as severely as they say now.”
Factories - Business - United - States - Categories
With only Chinese factories with business in the United States in certain targeted categories likely to be directly affected by the tariffs, there was more a sense of foreboding than outright panic on Monday, with the halls at the fair teeming with buyers.
The survey conducted by Reuters showed that Chinese exporters are more preoccupied with production costs, new orders and currency issues rather than fears of growing trade protectionism.
Trade - Fairs - China - Years - Platforms
While trade fairs have proliferated across China in recent years, alongside online platforms like Alibaba, the biannual Canton Trade Fair is still unsurpassed in scale.
The fair lures more Chinese manufacturers and foreign buyers than other rivals, serving as a barometer on China’s export sector that accounts for around 18 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. The Hong Kong electronics trade fair is one of the biggest in the region.
Three-quarters - Exporters - Dealings - United - States
While some three-quarters of exporters said they had dealings with the United States, 46 percent said they expected “no change” to their...
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