China Trade Talks Resume, Donald Trump Says Deal Still Possible
- Antoinette Montgomery
The two sides have been unable to reach a deal thanks, in part, to differences over the enforcement of an agreement and a timeline for removing the tariffs.
The negative tone that has gripped markets this week was triggered by a threat from President Donald Trump to go ahead with plans to impose more tariffs on Chinese goods this Friday. Upon taking office, Trump pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, walking away from 12-member trade alliance that would have aided efforts to outcompete China.
Consumer products, including cell phones, computers, clothing and toys, are to be especially hard hit.
"They broke the deal". We can't have that. Later he quoted Xi as saying in the letter: "Let's work together, let's see if we can get something done". The America Soybean Association has already urged the president to reach a trade deal with China as the ongoing escalations and uncertainties are "unacceptable" to US farmers.
Chinese exporters of all sorts of products, from power adapters and computers to vacuum cleaners, are anxiously hoping trade talks in Washington this week will yield a deal that might stave off higher US tariffs on imports from China.
Trump also said on Friday he was in no hurry to reach a deal with Beijing, arguing the United States was negotiating from a position of strength. Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng said the decision to send Liu to Washington despite the tariff hike threat demonstrated China's "utmost sincerity". During a recent earnings call, Cook pointed out that the reduction of the value-added tax in China as well as the "improved trade dialogue" between the USA and China helped lift consumer confidence there.
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Trump's recent threats have undoubtedly hurt the market with the Dow falling more than 2% this week and economists warning that US consumers will pay if the tensions continue or escalate. "A variety of plans are in place, such as countermeasures for any tariff rise, and favourable policies to minimise losses for Chinese enterprises", the Global Times, a tabloid published by the ruling Communist Party's People's Daily, said in an editorial.
"Trading today is telling me that the expectation for a trade deal is now that it's likely to happen a bit sooner than months away or never", he said.
Negotiators from both countries met Thursday and are continuing to meet Friday.
But earlier this year, investors were growing increasingly confident that the two sides would eventually find a deal on trade.
"If the USA tariff measures are implemented, China will have to take necessary countermeasures".
Markor Furnishings of Urumqi told securities regulators Monday that it had bought a USA sofa manufacturer and a Vietnamese wood furniture maker a year ago to dodge Trump's tariffs. Stock markets around the world have had a torrid week with investors seeking safer assets.
China has threatened to retaliate if President Donald Trump goes ahead with the tariff hikes, adding to the heated rhetoric from both sides that was shaking stock markets around the world.
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The two countries are sparring over USA allegations that China steals technology and pressures American companies into handing over trade secrets, part of an aggressive campaign to turn Chinese companies into world leaders in robotics, electric cars and other advanced industries.
The stripping of binding legal language from the draft struck directly at Lighthizer's highest priority. The worries about trade this week have stifled what has been the hottest start to a year for USA stocks in decades.
Gao said the Chinese side hopes that the U.S. can resolve existing economic and trade issues with China through cooperation and consultation, to the benefit of all, instead of through tariffs.
The move would mark a sharp escalation of the US-China trade war which has weighed on the global economy over the past year.
The grace period was not applied to three previous rounds of tariffs imposed past year on Chinese goods, which had much longer notice periods of at least three weeks before the duties took effect.
In fact, the revenues from tariffs, which so far have totalled about $34 billion, are not paid by Chinese exporters but by United States importers.
With the trade war entering its second year, the U.S. and China are wrestling with a long list of hot-button issues.
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