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STEVE CHIOTAKIS: Debate could start today in the U.S. House on a bill that would pressure China to increase the value of its currency — the yuan. The measure would make it easier for the U.S. to slap tariffs on Chinese imports. The idea is to make Chinese products more expensive so American companies can compete. But some American business groups don’t like the idea.
Marketplace’s Nancy Marshall Genzer has more.
NANCY MARSHALL GENZER: Supporters of the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act say China keeps its currency artificially low. That makes its exports much cheaper than U.S. products. U.S. manufacturers can’t compete. But some U.S. businesses are afraid the bill could start a trade war.
Stephanie Lester is with the Retail Industry Leaders Association. She says many U.S. retailers are opening new stores in China.
STEPHANIE LESTER: And we don’t want to see those market opportunities in China harmed by increased tensions with China over currency.
Lester says if the U.S. ratchets up the pressure, China could retaliate against American retailers. The American Soybean Association is also worried. Bob Callanan is the association’s spokesman.
BOB CALLANAN: China is our number one soybean customer. So we’re very concerned about Congress doing something to interfere with our trade.
This week, China increased duties on imports of chicken from the U.S. Just days after a House committee approved the currency reform act.
In Washington, I’m Nancy Marshall Genzer for Marketplace.
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