Published: Thu, December 06, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Trump optimistic despite haze around China trade

Trump optimistic despite haze around China trade

The threat of further escalation in the US-China trade war has loomed large over financial markets and the global economy for much of 2018, and investors initially greeted the ceasefire with relief.

A statement from an unnamed Chinese official said only that the negotiations with the US had a "clear timeline and road map" that China aimed to implement. "Bob Lighthizer will be working closely with Steve Mnuchin, Larry Kudlow, Wilbur Ross and Peter Navarro. on seeing whether or not a REAL deal with China is actually possible", Trump wrote in part of a four-tweet message. "Unless extended, they will end 90 days from the date of our wonderful and very warm dinner with President Xi in Argentina", Trump tweeted.

Trump agreed he will leave the tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese products at 10 percent, and not raise it to 25 percent as he has threatened to do January 1, according to a White House statement.

Lacking that, we may need a hero to stand against the threat of Tariff Man.

"Trump said China is planning to resume buying USA soybeans and natural gas, which he said confirms his claims that China had agreed to start "immediately" buying US products".

White House National Security Adviser John Bolton told the Wall Street Journal CEO Council meeting on Tuesday that Chinese theft of USA intellectual property was among the administration's top concerns.

It did not give further details but it crucially did not contradict the U.S. president's remarks that China would buy more goods from the United States to help close their trade gap and structural changes to intellectual property protection.

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Tuesday that a reduction in Chinese tariffs on USA cars and agricultural and energy commodities would be a "litmus test" for whether U.S.

"It doesn't seem like anything was actually agreed to at the dinner and White House officials are contorting themselves into pretzels to reconcile Trump's tweets (which seem if not completely fabricated then grossly exaggerated) with reality", JPMorgan Chase said in a trading note.

Stocks in the U.S., Europe and Asia fell sharply after Trump declared himself "a Tariff Man" who wants "people or countries" with intentions to "raid the great wealth" of the U.S.

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Mr Pompeo said in Brussels on Tuesday that the USA could abandon some worldwide agreements to thwart bad actors like China, which he accused of cynically exploiting World Trade Organisation rules.

In a commerce ministry statement, Chinese officials called the talks between the two leaders a "great success".

But the United States leader kept up the threats as he warned that he was ready to make China "pay for the privilege" of selling in the U.S. market if the negotiations fail.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer is taking over as lead negotiator from Mnuchin, who will continue to be involved in deals.

"Ultimately, I believe, we will be making a deal - either now or into the future", he wrote.

In late November, his office released a damning report on Chinese trade practices that gave China a low grade on resolving complaints on hacking, intellectual property theft, and forced technology transfers.

"Common to all these adjustments in the year ahead is a general tactical approach that until such time as China is able to finally bed down the fundamentals of its trade, investment, and economic relationship with the United States, it is wise for China to reduce tensions between Beijing and other countries and regions of the world", Rudd said.

One of the few automotive stocks to score a gain on Tuesday was Tesla which only recently began work on a new factory in Shanghai that eventually will let it sidestep the tariff battle. "It's just madness", one anonymous former official told The Post on Tuesday.

China pledged to buy more from the United States, and the White House said the two sides would negotiate "structural changes" to thorny issues plaguing relations, though few details and no dollar amounts were disclosed.

But earlier this week, Mr Trump said Beijing must pay for the "privilege" to trade with Washington.

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