TRADE BRIEFS

TRADE BRIEFS

HOUSE TO CHALLENGE VETO

OF ANTI-CHINA MFN BILL

WASHINGTON - The House is slated today to challenge President George Bush's March 2 veto of legislation limiting China's most-favored-nation tariff status after June 1992, legislative aides said.

But while the House has the two-thirds majority it needs - House members voted 409-21 last November to approve an MFN-limiting bill - the vote lacks a such a majority in the Senate by about eight votes, aides said. Both the House and Senate must have a two-thirds majority to override a presidential veto.

Nonetheless, Senate aides said they expect the Senate majority leader, George Mitchell, D-Maine, who authored the Senate's China bill, to follow the House's lead by calling for a Senate vote shortly.

REPORT: RUSSIA WEIGHING

ARMS SALES TO CHINA

LONDON - Petr Aven, Russian minister for foreign economic relations, said Russia is "putting great store on arms sales to China," the Itar-Tass news agency reported.

"Speaking at a press conference in Beijing at the end of a five-day visit to China, he said that, because of falling domestic demand for arms, 'now we are more interested than ever in selling them for export,' " the report said.

HONDA BEATS CHRYSLER

IN USE OF US PARTS

DETROIT - By one government measure, the Honda Accord factory in Marysville, Ohio, is more American than any of Chrysler Corp.'s four U.S. plants, according to an article in Monday's edition of Automotive News.

The industry trade newspaper cites Commerce Department figures compiled for free-trade zone subzones that show the plant run by American Honda Manufacturing Inc. bought 88.8 percent of its parts and materials from U.S. sources in the 1990 model year.

Chrysler's plants in Newark, Del.; Toledo, Ohio; Sterling Heights, Mich.; and Belvidere, Ill., ranged from 72.3 percent to 86.9 percent U.S. content. General Motors Corp. had the most U.S. content, followed by Ford Motor Co.

The data comes from the Foreign Trade Zone Board annual report for the 12 months ended Sept. 30, 1990, released earlier this year.

FOREIGN INVESTORS FLOCK

TO CHINA; US IS NO. 2

BEIJING - Foreign investment in China is growing steadily with Hong Kong/ Macau in the lead, followed by the United States and Japan, the ministry of foreign economic relations and trade reported.

Through the end of last year, 41,274 foreign-funded enterprises had been approved, it said. They involve total contracted investment of US$47.9 billion, of which US$20 billion had been put into operation.

In addition, there were 74 Sino-foreign joint projects in offshore oil with contracted investment of US$3.4 billion, of which US$2.8 billion has been used.

Ministry figures show the output value of foreign-funded companies accounts for about 5 percent of national industrial output, and their export volume about 20 percent of the national total.

US ECONOMIST DOWN

ON US DOLLAR GAIN

WASHINGTON - The appreciation of the U.S. dollar on foreign exchange markets is cutting the competitiveness of U.S. products and will dampen U.S. exports this year, a leading U.S. economist said Tuesday.

Martin Feldstein, an economics professor at Harvard University and chief White House economic adviser during the Reagan administration, spoke with a small group of reporters after testifying on monetary policy to a House banking subcommittee.

He said the dollar's gains "will show up in lower exports this year, and that is unfortunate." Strong U.S. exports over the past several months have been a key support to an economy still languishing in other areas.

INSTITUTE OFFERS BOOSTS

FOR SAGGING AUTO SALES

DETROIT - Give new-car buyers a tax credit, shift $2 billion from the Pentagon budget to low-interest loans for auto industry research and push Japan to open dealerships for American-built cars.

Those are among the recommendations offered Monday by the Washington-based Economic Strategy Institute to revive the anemic auto industry.

Clyde Prestowitz, the think tank's founder, who stopped in Detroit with Sen. Donald Riegle, D-Mich., wants to focus the debate before next week's Michigan primary on long-term strategies to save a domestic auto industry that lost more than $7 billion last year.