Trade talks between the U.S. and China are to resume and President Donald Trump will not, for now, impose tariffs on an additional $300 billion in Chinese imports. In return, China will increase its spending on U.S. agricultural products.
Those are key results to emerge from an 80-minute meeting between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping that occurred over the weekend at the G20 Summit in Japan.
I had a great meeting with President Xi of China yesterday, far better than expected. I agreed not to increase the already existing Tariffs that we charge China while we continue to negotiate. China has agreed that, during the negotiation, they will begin purchasing large.....
....amounts of agricultural product from our great Farmers. At the request of our High Tech companies, and President Xi, I agreed to allow Chinese company Huawei to buy product from them which will not impact our National Security. Importantly, we have opened up negotiations...
....again with China as our relationship with them continues to be a very good one. The quality of the transaction is far more important to me than speed. I am in no hurry, but things look very good! There will be no reduction in the Tariffs currently being charged to China.
The reprieve on more tariffs and a note of hope on a potential trade deal will come as welcomed news for the North American promotional products industry, which imports the vast majority of products sold here from Chinese manufacturers.
Over the last year, Trump has imposed tariffs as high as 25% on some $250 billion in imported products from China. That’s caused disruption in the promo space, triggering price increases on select items and causing market uncertainty that’s not conducive to business, among other problems, industry executives have said.
The tariffs on the $250 billion remain in place. There’s no timeframe for when a trade deal between the world’s two biggest national economies could be inked. In May, it appeared a trade deal was near, only for China to balk at certain enforcement mechanisms that the U.S. wanted in place to ensure what American negotiators say is a fairer playing field for U.S. companies in China. The breakdown in talks led Trump to hike the tariff rate on $200 billion in Chinese imports from 10% to 25%. China responded with retaliatory tariffs on $60 billion in U.S. goods.
Significant barriers remain to a trade deal. They include concerns over American firms’ intellectual property rights when doing business in China. Sticking points also include what some say is the potential national security threat to the U.S. posed by Chinese telecom company Huawei. Security experts are concerned that Huawei could become a means through which the Chinese government can spy on the U.S. For now, U.S. companies can keep supplying Huawei with components, Trump said.
Trump was non-committal about the likelihood of a new trade deal, saying: "They would like to make a deal, I can tell you that. If we could make a deal, it would be a very historic event."