However this requirement was inconsistent with the

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which were issued from 1980. However, this requirement was inconsistent with the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO) that prohibit discrimination of members, so the United States opposed China’s membership of WTO. By 1984, the United States had become China's third-largest trading partner, and China became America's 14th largest. However, the annual renewal of China's MFN status was constantly challenged by anti-Chinese pressure groups during US congressional hearings . For example, U.S. imports from China almost doubled within five years from $51.5 billion in 1996 to $102 billion in 2001. The American textile industry lobbied Congress for, and received, tariffs on Chinese textiles according to the WTO Agreement on Textiles and Clothing . In reaction to
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the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests ' suppression, the Bush I administration and Congress imposed administrative and legal constraints on investment, exports, and other trade relations with China. In 1991, China only accounted for 1% of total imports to the United States. The Clinton presidency from 1992 started with an executive order (128590) that linked renewal of China's MFN status with seven human rights conditions, including "preservation of Tibetan indigenous religion and culture" and "access to prisons for international human rights organizations"— Clinton reversed this position a year later. Other challenges to Sino-American relations in this decade included the Cox Committee investigations against supposed nonprofit involvement in "promoting communism", the persecution of Taiwanese-American scientist Wen Ho Lee for unproven allegations of espionage for the PRC, and the 1999 United States bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade . But relations warmed after the September 2001 initiation of the War on Terror . China joins the World Trade Organization For many years, China was the most important country which required an annual waiver to maintain free trade status. The waiver for the PRC had been in effect since 1980. Every year between 1989 and 1999, legislation was introduced in Congress to disapprove the President's waiver. The legislation had sought to tie free trade with China to meeting certain human rights conditions that go beyond freedom of emigration. All such attempted legislation failed to pass. The requirement of an annual waiver was inconsistent with the rules of the World Trade Organization , and for the PRC to join the WTO, Congressional action was needed to grant permanent normal trade relations (PNTR) to China. This was accomplished in 2000 with the United States–China Relations Act of 2000 , allowing China to join WTO in 2001. China's most favoured nation (MFN) status was made permanent on December 27, 2001. President Bill Clinton in 2000 pushed Congress to approve the U.S.-China trade agreement and China’s accession to the WTO, saying that more trade with China would advance America’s economic interests: "Economically, this agreement is the equivalent of a one-way street. It requires China to open its markets—with a fifth of the world’s population, potentially the biggest markets in the world—to both our products and services in unprecedented new ways," said Clinton. In a speech in 2000, Clinton reiterated his hopes: For the first time, our companies will be able to sell and distribute products in China made by
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