Published: Fri, January 11, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Talks lay foundation for future trade deal, says China

Talks lay foundation for future trade deal, says China

The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday the two sides were narrowing their differences, with Chinese officials offering greater purchases of United States goods and services and Cabinet-level follow-up meetings expected later this month.

"I can confirm we are continuing tomorrow (Wednesday)", Steven Winberg, assistant energy secretary, told reporters after returning to his hotel in Beijing.

According to a brief statement from the Chinese Commerce Ministry, the two sides held an "extensive, in-depth, and detailed exchange" on trade issues, including structural factors.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said the conduct of the United States ship had violated China's and worldwide law, and China had lodged "stern representations".

The statement came as trade talks between China and the United States were under way in Beijing, the first round of face-to-face discussions since both sides agreed to a 90-day truce in a trade war that has roiled worldwide markets.

USA commerce secretary Wilbur Ross predicted that the U.S. and Chinaare likely to reach a trade deal, as officials from both nations met for face-to-face talks in Beijingon Monday (New York time).

The discussions "went just fine", he said without elaborating, the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post reported.

China said talks with the United States "laid the foundations" to resolve a damaging trade dispute between the world's two largest economies.

"I don't think the US will easily remove tariffs that have been imposed on Chinese goods".

The three-day talks between the United States and China ended on Wednesday.

As evidence mounts by the day that the slowdown in China's economy is worsening, policy makers in Beijing are focusing on getting rid of the duties that Trump has leveled on Chinese goods since a year ago, according to a former high-level official briefed on the government's thinking.

He said it was hard to be optimistic about this first round of talks.

Trump and Xi have given their officials until March 1 to reach an accord on "structural changes" to China's economy on issues such as the forced transfer of American technology, intellectual-property rights, and non-tariff barriers.

The negotiations now pave the way for both countries' top negotiators - US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He - to thrash out a deal.

Trump said late Tuesday on Twitter that the talks were "going very well!". -China trade dispute. Apple Inc (AAPL.O) rattled global markets last week when it cut its sales outlook, blaming weak demand in China. In recent weeks, China has showed some signs of flexibility or acceding to the American demands.

And the US says China has agreed to buy substantially more American goods. China retaliated with tariffs of its own.

Russia is reportedly ranked as China's tenth biggest trade partner, while China remains a major importer of Russian produce, accounting for 15 percent of the country's global trade as of 2017. The U.S. and China have slapped a tariffs on a combined $360 billion in each other's imports since July.

Earlier this week, China approved five genetically modified (GM) crops for import, the first in about 18 months, which could boost its overseas grains purchases and ease USA pressure to open its markets to more farm goods.

Trade in services with China (exports and imports) totalled an estimated Dollars 75.0 billion in 2017.

So far, the US side has described the exchanges in a positive light. It's a tight window in which to nail down deep changes to China's economic model, some of which past US administrations advocated for years and USA lawmakers on both sides of the aisle support.

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