US, China wrap up talks on tariff battle

09 January, 2019, 18:59 | Author: Eric Barnett
  • China Risk

It is the first time that officials have met for face-to-face talks since President Trump and President Xi agreed a 90-day ceasefire in December.

The talks went one day longer than planned, which showed that both sides are serious about negotiations, Lu added.

An American delegation has been in Beijing since Monday for the first sit-down talks since Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping agreed to a three-month truce on December 1.

BEIJING/WASHINGTON-The United States and China will continue trade talks in Beijing for an unscheduled third day, USA officials said on Tuesday amid signs of progress on issues including purchases of us farm and energy commodities and increased access to China's markets.

Increased purchases by China of U.S. soybeans, oil, liquefied natural gas and financial services are viewed as easier to achieve than major changes to China's industrial policies aimed at transferring U.S. technology to Chinese firms.

World stocks extend their gains to hit a near-four week high and oil prices rose today on optimism that the United States and China may be inching towards a trade deal, soothing fears an all-out trade war could hit a slowing global economy.

The talks went ahead despite tensions over the arrest of a Chinese tech executive in Canada on US charges she misled multinational banks about her company's business dealings in Iran. Bloomberg reported that China had communicated they would have a lower level Commerce Ministry official participating in the talks.

The U.S. delegation - which is being led by Deputy Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish - is requesting China be specific on what U.S. products it will buy and on what specific dates. Among many things, the Communist leader pledged to buy more US agricultural and industrial products, allow increased access to Chinese markets, and abide by more cybersecurity and property theft rules.

People familiar with the talks said the world's two largest economies were further apart on Chinese structural reforms that the Trump administration is demanding in order to stop alleged theft and forced transfer of U.S. technology and on how to hold Beijing to its promises. Asian bourses saw a strong finish with Japan's Nikkei and China's blue-chip CSI 300 closing up 1 percent while the tech-heavy South Korean KOSPI jumped almost 2 percent.

And onto the latest on the trade talks between the world's two superpowers.

Trump imposed tariff increases of up to 25 per cent on $250 billion U.S. of Chinese imports.

"There is further upside to come in prices, as we see more evidence coming through that members of OPEC+ are complying with their new production cut", said Warren Patterson, senior commodities strategist at ING Bank NV.

But cooling economic growth in both countries is raising pressure to reach a settlement.

The United States has long complained about access to the vast Chinese market and Beijing's demands USA companies reveal their technology advances.

The U.S. economy grew at an annual rate of 3.4 per cent in the third quarter and unemployment is at a five-decade low.

The president has focused on the stock market as it's fallen over the past month as a gauge of success or failure, expressing frustration at the volatility, the people said.

For their part, Chinese officials are unhappy with US curbs on exports of "dual use" technology with possible military applications.


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