China trade talks resume in Beijing

04 May, 2018, 14:25 | Author: Orlando Hughes
  • US-China talks end in increased tension and demand for $200bn trade deficit cut

The most likely outcome for tense U.S. It has been described by both US and Chinese officials as a chance for the U.S.to exchange views rather than a negotiation that would produce more tangible results. "If protecting what's on your side of the equation incentivizes China to do things differently, then that's a win", he said.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow are taking part. The Chinese media has reportedly been instructed not to report on the meetings beyond what is contained in an official government press release.

The first round of threatened tariffs by the US focused heavily on technology products. The U.S. tariffs could go into effect in June following the completion of a 60-day consultation period, but USTR has kept its activation plans vague.

China has threatened retaliation with tariffs on USA soybeans and aircraft.

"In the event of a trade war, we have a much greater ability to endure (the consequences) than the USA", the Chinese official said.

Mnuchin, who is also the U.S. President's special envoy, is meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, who is heading the Chinese side.

Trump has demanded a $100 billion annual reduction in the $375 billion US goods trade deficit with China.

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The U.S. trade delegation in China for talks has put its cards on the table in Friday's meeting.

"They will bring back an offer and all give their opinions to Trump on whether to take it", said Derek Scissors, a China trade expert at the American Enterprise Institute, a business-oriented Washington think tank.

The talks may receive some tailwinds from the latest trade data out of Washington, showing the USA global trade deficit had narrowed in March.

The White House has sent a large delegation led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to China to negotiate over trade issues.

In doing so, China expected Washington to reciprocate and open its market to Chinese investment and competition, it said.

The officials, however, did not divulge details about the talks, the AFP report added.

But in the same newspaper, Kishore Mahbubani, a professor at the National University of Singapore, warned that China may be underestimating how dramatically USA political and public opinion was swinging against Beijing's trade and economic policies.

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