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Mitt Romney trade plan aims to hit China, open markets

By Kasie Hunt

Associated Press

Published: Thursday, Oct. 13 2011 12:15 p.m. MDT

Republican presidential candidate former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney makes his point during a Republican presidential debate at Dartmouth College in Hanover, N.H., Tuesday night, Oct. 11, 2011.

Jim Cole, Associated Press

Enlarge photo»

REDMOND, Wash. — Mitt Romney is outlining trade policies he says are aimed at punishing China's trade practices and opening more markets around the world for American goods.

In a speech at Microsoft's headquarters Thursday, Romney is to call for additional trade agreements, a new free-trade zone among countries that agree to respect intellectual property rights and for new punishments for China if the country doesn't allow currency markets to value the yuan.

China's government controls the value of its currency against the dollar, a practice that U.S. manufacturers say hikes the price of American goods in China by 40 percent. Romney is also criticizing President Barack Obama for not being tough enough on China. Democrats say Obama has repeatedly pressured China to stop manipulating its currency.

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