Washington's restrictive policies on technology exports and visa procedures have been criticised by the American Chamber of Commerce in China, which has warned that the US will end up ceding market share to other countries competing for market share in China. 'We have some complaints about the investment environment, as far as the Chinese government is concerned. We also see some areas where the US is handicapping itself,' said chamber president Charles Martin. Washington's 'overly restrictive' visa and export controls regarding China had 'a significant opportunity cost for American businesses', said Don Forest, co-chairman of the chamber's public policy committee. In its annual report, the chamber was particularly critical of the US government's export control policies due to military concerns, which it described as 'neither sufficiently targeted nor efficient'. 'Many US firms that sell technology feel that the controls do little to protect national security as the relevant technologies can be purchased from non-US sources,' it said. Although the value of lost sales of dual-use products was relatively small, the real damage was done by the 'uncertainty and opacity that discourages potential sellers from even beginning the process', Mr Forest said. Mr Martin said: 'Our worry is the US could end up putting in restrictions that have no basis in fact.' He also described Washington's visa policies towards China as a significant deterrent to Chinese who wanted to buy goods and services in the US. According to the report, 44 per cent of US-funded companies surveyed said they had lost significant sales as a result of US visa policies, while nearly 70 per cent had avoided arranging meetings in the US due to visa concerns. The chamber also lashed out at Washington's inadequate spending on export promotions, which resulted in US exporters trailing the competition in capturing market share on the mainland.