U.S., China to Resume Trade Talks as Tariffs Bite

U.S., China to Resume Trade Talks as Tariffs Bite

Reuters reported Thursday that representatives from the Treasury Department will meet with China's Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Shouwen and other officials in Washington, D.C.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the talks in Washington would take place on August 21 and 22, just before $16 billion in new US tariffs on Chinese goods take effect, along with an equal amount of retaliatory tariffs from Beijing.

In an attempt to solve the trade conflict between the United States and China, Beijing will send a delegation to meet with USA counterparts in Washington later this month.

However, the upcoming meeting is lower-level compared to the four previous rounds of negotiations.

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Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen, the deputy representative on global trade negotiations, will meet with a senior USA treasury official, David Malpass, at the invitation of the United States, the ministry said in a statement. Since those talks ended, the USA and China have been locked in a trade standoff as they slapped tariffs on billions of dollars of each other's goods.

The offshore Chinese yuan rose briefly on the news against the dollar, strengthening to a high of 6.9165 before paring gains. The SCI 300 Index was up 0.59 per cent by mid-morning, having fallen as much as 1.8 per cent shortly after open.

The president has argued that the tariffs are necessary in order to secure better trade deals, even though the USA has yet to establish any new agreement since the duties were put in place.

Easing trade tensions helped lift Chinese copper futures off 14-month lows.

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Prices of Chinese farm goods fell amid hopes that supplies of USA soybeans, used to make cooking oil and animal feed, may resume if talks bring an end to the dispute.

Washington slapped 25% tariffs on $34bn of Chinese goods in early July, leading Beijing to respond with similar levies, and further tariffs on $16bn of Chinese goods are due to come into effect on 23 August.

News of the meeting boosted the yuan and aided China's stock market, Reuters reported.

A currency war will be inevitable if the United States ratchets up tariffs to 25pc on $200bn of Chinese goods this September, economists fear.

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Those tariffs will be the latest action in an ongoing tit-for-tat exchange of duties between the two countries, prompting concerns of an escalating trade war between the world's two largest economies.

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