Trade

White House says US, China trade talks to continue Friday

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The White House announced that the U.S. and China would continue trade talks on Friday after discussions wrapped up Thursday without a deal to avert additional tariffs.

President Trump met with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday night to discuss ongoing trade negotiations with China, the White House confirmed in a statement.

“The Ambassador and Secretary then had a working dinner with Vice Premier Liu He, and agreed to continue discussions tomorrow morning at USTR,” White House spokesman Judd Deere added in the statement, referring to Lighthizer’s office.{mosads}

Trump has ordered tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods to rise from 10 percent to 25 percent, a tariff increase set to go into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, an escalation of Trump’s high-stakes trade battle with major risks for the economy and his reelection.

“For 10 months, China has been paying Tariffs to the USA of 25% on 50 Billion Dollars of High Tech, and 10% on 200 Billion Dollars of other goods,” Trump tweeted Sunday. “These payments are partially responsible for our great economic results. The 10% will go up to 25% on Friday.”

In return, China’s Commerce Ministry on Thursday said it would take “necessary countermeasures” if the tariffs increase, according to The Associated Press.

Vice Premier Liu He had told Chinese state media that he was traveling to Washington “with sincerity” and warned that raising tariffs could hurt both countries, Bloomberg News reported.

Trump on Wednesday described Liu as a “good man” but later said at a rally that China “broke the deal.”

Still, the president appeared hopeful on Thursday that a deal would be reached. 

“I think it’ll be a very strong day,” he said, adding, “I have no idea what’s going to happen.” 

He also asserted that American tariffs on Chinese goods were bringing “billions” of dollars to the U.S. government. 

“Our alternative is an excellent one,” the president said. “It’s an alternative I’ve spoken about for years. We’ve taken well over $100 billion from China in a year.”

Meanwhile, the S&P 500 retreated for a fourth day Thursday following Trump’s tweet vowing the tariffs. This is the worst dip in the index this year.

 

Tags China China–United States trade war Donald Trump Economy of the United States Robert Lighthizer Steven Mnuchin Trade Trump tariffs

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