US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has said that China represents an 'unprecedented' threat to world trading system. Photo: Reuters/ Kevin Lamarque

Speaking in a rare media interview this week, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said that Trump is determined to challenge China’s “non-economic” practices.

Lighthizer said, speaking on the syndicated “Kevin McCullough Radio” that he doesn’t believe the United States’ trade deficit with China is based on economic forces, but rather is the result of industrial policy.

“There’s no question that China has an industrial policy that is designed to create jobs and wealth in China. And in many cases there are things that are outside of the norm of the WTO. […] They do what you can’t blame them for doing – they’re trying to create jobs in China, they’re trying to create industry in China and wealth in China.”

“Our objective is not to let that go on in an unfair way.”

When asked whether the president had changed his views since his harsh rhetoric targeting China’s trade practices on the campaign trial, Lighthizer said he “certainly sees no modulation.”

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