US invites China to trade talks as tariffs loom: White House adviser

13 September, 2018, 21:39 | Author: Eric Barnett

President Donald Trump said last week that new tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods could go into effect "very soon" and warned that an even bigger raft of measures is in the works. The Trump administration has invited Chinese officials to hold a new round of trade talks, top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said Wednesday.

"We share the concerns of the USA regarding China's trade and investment practices, but continuing along the path of tariff escalation is extremely unsafe", warned Harborn.

In recent meetings with cabinet-level Chinese officials, USCBC representatives were told that licensing won't resume "until the trajectory of the U.S".

"There's some discussions and information that we received that the Chinese government - the top of the Chinese government wished to pursue talks", Mr Kudlow said.

But US firms are feeling whiplash from both sides as they sell and make goods in China, with Washington's border tax increase and Beijing's counter-punch hurting more than 60% of businesses, according to the poll.

More companies say they will suffer if Trump goes ahead with his planned tariff hike and Beijing retaliates, according to the American Chambers of Commerce in China and in Shanghai.

Also Thursday, the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China said one in six of its members that responded to a survey are delaying investment or expansion.

The Journal reported that the USA reached out because of political pressure on Trump to ease up on trade fights ahead of November's midterm elections.

The Trump administration is preparing to activate tariffs on US$200 billion worth of Chinese goods, hitting a broad array of internet technology products and consumer goods from handbags to bicycles to furniture. The US government accuses China of stealing intellectual property and forcing American companies to hand over valuable technology.


But Kudlow was non-committal over the chances of a breakthrough, adding: "I guarantee nothing".

The timing and location of the proposed meeting were unclear, the sources familiar with the matter said.

The last talks, between mid-level USA and Chinese officials on August 22 and 23, failed to reach any agreement.

Some 63.6 percent of more than 430 companies that responded to the American chambers' survey said profits and customer demand have fallen due to the USA tariffs and 62.5 percent said the same about retaliatory Chinese tariffs.

Scott Kennedy, deputy director of China studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, said he suspected the invitation to talks would be viewed skeptically in Beijing. In the case of the Trump administration's trade tensions with China, the USA clearly has an edge when it comes to imposing tariffs.

Democrat McCaskill leads Republican Hawley by 3 points in Missouri Senate race Pence cancels trip to Georgia after Hurricane Florence path changes Trump's school safety commission will not support age limits for gun purchases: report MORE on Thursday pushed back on a Wall Street Journal article claiming that the U.S.is facing new pressure to make a trade deal with China.

So far, the United States and China have hit $50 billion worth of each others' goods with tariffs in a dispute over US demands that China make sweeping economic policy changes, including ending joint venture and technology transfer policies, rolling back industrial subsidy programs and better protecting American intellectual property.

"The proposal comes as the Trump administration is gearing up to impose tariffs on an additional $200 billion of Chinese goods, after imposing tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods earlier this year".

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