According to China’s Foreign Ministry, the country has exported more than 43 billion masks to the United States since March 2020, among other products. China has been a major provider of medical supplies to the American market.
Yet, behind the booming trade, U.S.’s attitude towards China is ambivalent. The Biden administration has announced it will extend tariff exclusions on a series of medical products from China until September 30. Earlier, the Trump administration decided to extend the exclusion until March.
Chen Changning, director of American Studies Center, Sichuan University, observed, “Currently, the U.S. needs Chinese supplies to save lives and improve the health of its people. If your people really need supplies from some country, you definitely should wish those countries to be stable, so you can always buy reliable necessities. It makes no sense to disrupt your suppliers when you’re really needing them.”