U.S. Trade Rep: U.S. and China aim to sign phase one deal in January

According to President Trump’s top trade advisor, the United States and China are aiming to sign a phase one trade deal in January in Washington.

<a href=”https://www.cnbc.com/2019/12/13/us-and-china-aim-to-sign-trade-deal-in-january-trump-official-says.html target=”_new”>CNBC:

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, one of the lead negotiators in talks with Chinese officials, also told reporters Friday that it would still be wise to be skeptical of whether China would deliver on certain agreements. He also said that there would be no new tariffs as long as China continues to negotiate in good faith.

Lighthizer said the signing would be at the minister level and would not involve Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The Trump administration has not promised a future rollback of tariffs, Lighthizer said, adding it would be wise to be skeptical on whether China would deliver on certain agreements.

MacDailyNews Note: Earlier today, Jacob Pramuk reported for CNBC that “the U.S. and China have reached an agreement on a phase one trade deal” and that the “two sides will work through the legal process and move to sign it as quickly as possible.”

The White House would leave 25% tariffs on $250 billion in imports in place while cutting existing duties on another $120 billion in products to 7.5%.

Beijing will increase agricultural purchases significantly, Vice Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs Han Jun said… Both sides said they would move to make changes related to intellectual property, technology transfers and financial services. The White House has repeatedly said it wants to address those issues as Trump pushes to crack down on what he calls Chinese trade abuses.

Speaking to reporters in the White House later Friday, Trump said he would use the existing tariffs as a negotiating tool in future discussions. He added that he thinks China will start buying $50 billion in U.S. agriculture goods “pretty soon.”

The 15% tariff on about $160 billion in Chinese goods that the White House now plans to cancel would have affected consumer goods including toys, phones and clothing.

The agreement still needs to go through legal procedures as Washington and Beijing work toward setting a time for inking it.

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