US-China Trade War Comes to a Temporary Halt

By Jonathan Zhong, December 3, 2018

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Following months of tit-for-tat retaliation over trade, China and the United States have agreed to a 90-day halt in the trade war after the top leaders of the two powers conducted discussions at the G20 meeting in Buenos Aires on December 1.

The temporary truce, which begins on January 1, 2019, will allow the two countries to conduct further talks to work out constructive plans for tackling their ongoing trade disputes and reaching a fair deal.

During the meeting, President Donald Trump agreed to decrease what could have been a 25 percent tariff rate on USD200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 10 percent. In return, President Xi Jinping agreed to purchase a “very substantial” amount of agriculture, energy and industrial products from the US to lessen the trade imbalance, although the exact amount has not yet been decided.

READ MORE: China Hits Back with Another $60 Billion in Tariffs Against US

Within the 90-day period, the two countries will endeavor to seek constructive solutions to their disputes in areas such as intellectual property protection, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and cyber theft, services and agriculture, with negotiations already being underway and China immediately beginning to purchase agricultural products from US farmers, according to the White House.

However, if during this negotiation period, the two countries fail to reach a consensus, the US will raise their tariffs to 25 percent, the White House said.

At present, both parties are pleased with the results of the meeting, with President Trump describing it as “amazing, productive… with unlimited possibilities” and Wang Yi, China’s minister of foreign affairs, saying that the talks were “very positive and constructive.”

Wang added that China is willing to expand imports from the US according to “the needs of the domestic market and the Chinese people” and that both parties are working to remove all tariffs, according to China Daily.

[Cover image via Beijing Evening News/WeChat]

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