China-US trade talks move to higher level as deadline looms

14 Février, 2019, 11:10 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • US pursuit of FONOPS in the South China Sea irritates China

A banquet will be hosted for the U.S. delegation in "a Chinese cuisine restaurant" in Beijing later this week, with Liu expected to toast the USA delegates.

Since then China has offered to close its trade surplus with the U.S. by buying more soyabeans and other commodities, but the Trump administration is pushing for a more comprehensive agreement that addresses intellectual property theft, technology transfer and state-owned enterprises.

The two sides said major progress was made in talks last month in Washington, but subsequent comments have been less optimistic, jarring financial markets and amplifying concerns about how the dispute will affect fragile world growth.

"The downbeat outlook for global growth means that this year is likely to be challenging for Chinese exporters, even if the ongoing US-China trade negotiations culminate in a deal", Evans-Pritchard wrote in a research note. Mr Trump indicated this week he would be willing to extend that deadline. China's trading partners say those violate its market-opening obligations and some in America worry they might erode USA industrial leadership.

The people said that Trump is weighing whether to add 60 days to the current deadline to give negotiations more time to continue.

Mr Liu is the top economic adviser to President Xi.

Chinese officials also are balking at USA pressure to accept a mechanism to monitor whether Beijing carries out its promises, said Kuijs. It will be his second meeting with Lighthizer following last month's talks in Washington. Deputy-level officials started talks on Monday.

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Asian stocks steadied and US stock futures climbed.

Chinese regulators have announced plans to improve protection of foreign patents and copyrights. But it's unclear whether that will satisfy Washington and other governments that complain the system is created to extract technology from foreign companies and to use official industrial standards to shield Chinese enterprises from competition.

"One possible explanation for January's upbeat export data could be some re-arrangement of regional supply chains on the back of the ongoing China-US trade dispute", said Betty Wang, an economist at ANZ bank. "President Trump and President Xi sitting down face-to-face figuring that out and getting that final deal because they are the only two that'll ultimately be able to nail that down", Sanders said.

Another Mar-a-Lago meeting?

The Hong Kong newspaper The South China Morning Post reported Monday the meeting could take place in late March on the southern Chinese island of Hainan.

Other possible sites include Beijing or Mr. Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, where the two met in April 2017, the USA news website Axios reported, citing Trump administration officials.

And what if Mr. Trump goes ahead with a March 2 tariff hike to step up pressure on Beijing?

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