Trump to Meet China's Liu in Sign Trade Talks Reach Final Stages

Trump to Meet China's Liu in Sign Trade Talks Reach Final Stages

"We'll tariff their cars", he said. Three days later, he predicted that he would sign a deal "fairly soon".

Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He is in Washington today for continuing trade talks focused on Chinese purchases of American agricultural, energy and aviation goods. It may take four weeks to put together a framework for the deal and two weeks more to put the details on paper, he said.

Michael Pillsbury, a China expert at the Hudson Institute, said the emerging accord would not erase all of the irritants in the US-China relationship.

The Chinese are widely expected to agree to buy substantially more American products - likely including soybeans and natural gas - to help narrow the United States' trade deficit in goods and services with China, which hit a record $379 billion previous year. "It's closer to being a cease-fire", said Pillsbury, an occasional Trump adviser on China. Mr Trump has suggested that at least some of the tariffs will stay in place, saying they are necessary "for a substantial period of time" to ensure Beijing keeps up its end of the bargain.

USA officials favour tariffs as a way to maintain leverage on China and ensure those obligations are met. A pair of recent academic studies concluded that the entire tariff burden has fallen on Americans.

Though Trump has been pushing for the Chinese leader to travel to the United States to sign a trade deal, Xi is unlikely to do so unless the agreement is 100 percent complete.

First, Trump wants to preserve at least the 25% tariffs he has imposed on Dollars 50 billion in Chinese imports as a way to maintain leverage over Beijing.

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More discussion between the two countries are due to kick off on April 3, with China's lead negotiator to arrive in Washington.

The presidents want a deal, and they need to get through the end-game issues.

While some reform pledges by Beijing are largely set, including an agreement to avoid currency manipulation, an enforcement mechanism to ensure that China keeps its pledges and the status of United States tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods must be resolved.

Trump long has been an outspoken critic of Chinese trade practices.

In his speech to the Republican committee, Trump said that had he not imposed the tariffs, the Chinese economy would have caught up with the United States within years.

Washington wants the right to keep the 10 per cent tariff it imposed previous year on $US200 billion ($281 billion) of imports into the United States, and to increase the hit if China fails to deliver without giving Beijing the right to retaliate in turn. There has been a lot of convergence on the agenda of the talks in the USA and Chinese statements. This would represent a backslide in China's movement toward an open market economy, potentially frustrating U.S. attempts to increase American companies' access to, and investment in, Chinese markets.

Scissors, and others who see China as a U.S. adversary, worry the trade bargain may carry unintended consequences. "We have to make sure there's enforcement".

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