“China has made doing our type of business, which partly involves importing agricultural products into China, more difficult every year since I have been coming to China,” said an unnamed senior manager in the survey published on Tuesday by the American Chamber of Commerce in China. “They, the Chinese government, make us do various tasks that have no basis in science. I feel we are at risk.”
While American executives have been reluctant to speak out publicly about official bias to avoid potential retaliation by the Chinese authorities, some 314 companies joined the survey published by Beijing-based AmCham China, which was conducted between Nov. 13 and Dec. 16.
Nearly half the respondents said Washington should “advocate more strongly for a level playing field for U.S. business,” reinforcing a demand President Donald Trump’s administration has pushed in its trade confrontation with Beijing. Trump announced the postponement of a planned March 1 increase in tariffs on Chinese imports into the U.S. on Sunday, citing progress in the trade talks ahead of a planned meeting next month with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
The top complaint of survey respondents in relation to unfair treatment is that local companies get better market access. This factor was cited by 62% of companies, up from 55% a year earlier.