Published: Thu, November 07, 2019
Markets | By Otis Pena

China, US to lift some tariff hikes as trade talks advance

China, US to lift some tariff hikes as trade talks advance

China and the United States have agreed to proportionally roll back tariffs on each other's goods in phases, a Ministry of Commerce spokesman said.

Beijing, Nov 7 (SocialNews.XYZ) China on Thursday announced that it has reached an agreement with the USA to phase out bilateral tariffs imposed during the trade dispute that began in March 2018.

"If the two sides achieve a "Phase 1" agreement, then based on the content of that agreement, tariffs already increased should be canceled at the same time and by the same rate", Gao said at a news briefing.

The U.S. -China trade war has been a top concern for investors since early 2018, and momentum has recently been tilting toward at least a partial agreement. GDP figures showed that the Chinese economy expanded 6.0% in July-September, compared with 6.2% in the second quarter.

The proportion of tariffs cancelled must be the same, and how many tariffs should be cancelled can be negotiated, Gao told reporters.

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In what could be another gesture to boost optimism, China's state news agency Xinhua reported late on Thursday that the Chinese customs and the ministry of agriculture are considering removing restrictions on U.S. poultry imports.

The proposed interim trade deal is expected to include a US commitment to scrap $156 billion on Chinese imports including mobile phones, laptops and toys set to go into effect on December 15.

That would potentially provide a road-map to end the bruising trade war after reports suggested a meeting between President Trump and Xi Jinping could be postponed until December - delaying a chance for the two leaders to sign an interim trade deal.

With OPEC and other top producers led by Russian Federation meeting next month, Bloomberg News cited sources as saying they were likely to maintain their current agreement for caps - which are due to run out in March - well into 2020.

Removing all existing tariffs has always been Beijing's bottom line to reach a trade deal with Washington. One possible location was London, where the leaders could meet after a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit that Trump is due to attend from December 3-4, the official said. All the products were part of the $250 billion worth of Chinese goods that the Trump administration targeted past year.

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