Zhang made the remarks on Wednesday at a press briefing on the 2019 China-California Business Forum to be held in June in Los Angeles. "The current trade frictions between China and the United States are not something we initiated nor we desire. It is only because of U.S. trade bullying, maximum pressure and increasing unreasonable demands," Zhang said.
Even after the U.S. government announced the increase of additional tariffs on 200 billion dollars' worth of Chinese imports from 10 percent to 25 percent on May 10, the Chinese delegation still went to Washington D.C. to attend a new round of trade talks, and had taken a constructive approach throughout the negotiations, Zhang said.
However, the U.S. administration threatened to raise tariffs on more Chinese imports and the latest round of China-U.S. trade talks ended up with no deal reached.
Zhang said trade war is against the interests of both China and the United States, and is harmful to both economies. It also disrupts international trade order and supply chains. China does not want to fight a trade war and "Trade war makes no winner," he said. "We have the confidence and capability to cope with any challenge, and will take necessary measures to defend our legitimate interests and rights," Zhang said.
China is willing to solve the current dispute with the United States through dialogue and consultation, he stressed, adding that the door for negotiation remains open.
However, to make consultation meaningful, there should be sincerity, and China's fundamental interests should be taken care of, he added.
Zhang also called on the U.S. side to offer a fair and non-discriminatory environment for Chinese investment.