Somehow, China learned the lesson of George Orwell's Animal Farm: all are equal in the WTO but some are more equal than others. China enhanced its WTO membership with special breaks and loopholes that allow China to sell slave-manufactured goods worldwide but protect its own industries from foreign competition. The result? China sells microwave ovens for $49 in the United States. But the U.S.-built Jeep Grand Cherokee, which sells in the U.S. for $27,490, sells for $85,000 in China because the Chinese add tariffs and other fees. Since only a few Chinese millionaires can afford such a luxury, fewer than 2,500 have been sold in China this year. So the Grand Cherokee costs three times as much in China as in the U.S.
China was admitted to the World Trade Association only after promising to accept its rules about free trade. But as the lawyers say when you end up disappointed by a contract, you should have read the fine print. The fine print in China's WTO agreement gave China status as a "nonmarket economy" and spelled out thousands of special preferences for China, such as China was allowed to impose higher tariffs than other countries.
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