China, US to hold trade talks next week

Marsha Scott
January 7, 2019

On January 1, China and the USA congratulated each other on the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Trade negotiations could still be affected due to the diplomatic row following the arrest of Huawei's Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou in Canada at the request of the United States for allegedly violating sanctions against Iran. As of July, the US was running a $222.6 billion trade deficit with China.

To try to compel China to reform its ways, Washington has imposed tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports; Beijing has counterpunched by taxing $110 billion in us goods. -China trade war, investors in the USA markets are worrying about rising interest rates and a wobbly US real estate market. American officials worry those might erode USA industrial leadership, and complain that China's technological prowess is underpinned by the theft of intellectual property from US firms.

The talks on January 7-8 will be the first face-to-face meeting between the two the countries over trade since Xi and Trump agreed a 90-day truce in Buenos Aires on December 1. Growth is expected by the government to have eased to around 6.5 percent in 2018, down from 6.9 percent in 2017.

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In the same year, late paramount leader, often credited with China's "Reform and Opening" policy which led to its economic transformation, met USA president in the United States. There are fears of both sides hiking tariffs if no deal is reached. "The US and Chinese working groups [on trade and economic issues] will hold constructive talks on the implementation of important agreements, reached by the leaders of the two countries during their Argentina meeting", the ministry said.

"Lighthizer was a mentor to him, so I think they share a similar world view", Scott Kennedy, a China expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies told the Financial Times.

White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett said Thursday that "it's not going to be just Apple" that faces revenue shortfalls as a result of the trade tensions initiated by President Donald Trump between the United States and China. An escalating trade war would make the situation even worse.

In addition to Gerrish, the U.S. team will include the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative's top negotiator on agricultural issues, Gregg Doud; Treasury Under Secretary for International Affairs David Malpass; Commerce Under Secretary for International Trade Gilbert Kaplan; the U.S. Agriculture Department's under secretary for trade and foreign affairs, Ted McKinney; the U.S. Department of Energy's assistant secretary for fossil energy, Steven Winberg; and other senior officials. Yet those very pressures, analysts say, give the two countries a stronger incentive to make peace.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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