tinyfav.com April 26, 2018

Trump praises China's Xi's trade speech, easing tariff tensions

14 April 2018, 08:16 | Myrtle Vega

The University of Hong Kong Professor Emeritus John Burns weighs in on Xi’s speech at the Boao Forum in Hainan

The University of Hong Kong Professor Emeritus John Burns weighs in on Xi’s speech at the Boao Forum in Hainan

Promising a "new phase of opening up", Xi said China would "considerably lower" tariffs on cars and other products this year, take measures to liberalize automobile investment, and protect intellectual property - all areas that have been high on the list of demands by Washington. Instead, he elaborated on existing plans to open lower-tech manufacturing and financial services sectors, where China sees foreign investment as improving competitiveness and helping develop a more consumer-focused economy. Trump predicted, hailing the speech in which Xi renewed a commitment to lower vehicle import tariffs.

He said "Cold War mentality" and arrogance had become obsolete and would be repudiated.

While Xi's speech did not inflame trade tensions, other comments by government officials have taken a firm line.

He tweeted on Monday that "when a auto is sent to the United States from China, there is a tariff to be paid of 2-and-a-half percent and when a vehicle is sent to China from the USA, the tariff is 25 percent". Tariff increases will make US soybeans uncompetitive, causing them to be replaced by products from Brazil and Argentina, according to Chen Yang, a researcher with the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences. In recent days, Chinese officials have expressed increased frustration with the USA, with the foreign ministry on Monday calling talks "impossible" under current conditions.

The United States had earlier rejected a Chinese proposal to narrow the trade deficit by $50 billion, including by importing more liquefied natural gas, agricultural products, semiconductors and luxury goods, the person said.

He added: "Up to now China and the U.S. has not carried out negotiation at any level on the trade frictions".

Talks hit a snag over U.S. efforts to curb Beijing's "Made in China 2025" program, which identifies 10 local industries to make globally competitive by 2025, and globally dominant during this century.

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China's exports rode a global trade boom past year, expanding at the fastest pace since 2013 and serving as one of the key drivers behind the economy's forecast-beating 6.9 percent expansion.

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Trump has to decide whether in the next 60 days to accept something like the deal offered by Liu He or to proceed with the tariffs on $50 billion of imports.

China retaliated by unveiling planned levies on $50-billion worth of major USA exports.

The State Council Information Office, which represents China's central government, didn't reply to faxed questions Monday on US trade talks. Whenever there is more conciliatory talk about negotiating an agreement, markets rise.

Aside from big companies, there are a lot of farmers in Trump country who have a lot to lose if exports to China are penalized.

"China is laying a preliminary foundation to talk with the United States", said Pang Zhongying, a Beijing-based global relations expert.

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