‘No breakthrough in US-China trade talks’

January 20,2019

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Washington: White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow has played down reports of a breakthrough in US-China trade talks, but said progress had been made.

"We´ve made some progress with China in the deputy´s meeting in Beijing," Larry Kudlow, director of the National Economic Council, told Fox Business. But he added: "Nothing has been resolved, nothing on paper, no contracts."

Recent news reports of a deal being imminent were not accurate, he said.

“It’s going to take time. We are moving,” he said. “I’d love to make a deal. I’m a free trader but it’s got to be a great deal.”

However, President Trump does remain optimistic on the prospect of reaching a trade deal and is shrewdly negotiating with Beijing to strike the best deal for the U.S. “He wants to make a China deal that is a great deal for America and its workforce and its farmers and its manufacturers and its technology,” Kudlow said.

Bloomberg had reported earlier Friday that Beijing had offered to eliminate its soaring trade surplus with the United States in five years.

The US sent a delegation led by Deputy Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish to Beijing earlier this month, where they held talks with China´s foreign ministry to seek ways to end their trade war.

China´s chief negotiator on trade disputes with the United States, Vice Premier Liu He, is due in Washington on January 30 and 31 for the next round talks. Liu’s visit follows lower-level negotiations held in Beijing last week to resolve the bitter dispute between the world’s two largest economies by March 2, when the Trump administration is scheduled to increase tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods.

A U.S. team led by Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish, and representatives from the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Energy and Treasury, along with White House senior officials, met with China’s Foreign Ministry a little over a week ago as the two sides look to end the trade spat that is striking fear of a global economic slowdown.

The world’s two largest economies have been locked in a trade war since last year that has resulted in a tit-for-tat tariffs against each other's goods. —AFP/Monitoring


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