Thursday, 24 January, 2019

US, China leave next steps for trade talks unclear

US destroyer sails in disputed South China Sea amid trade talks US-China Trade Talks Wrap Up After Extending To Third Day
Steven Clarke | 11 January, 2019, 20:54

Asian markets were mostly lower Thursday as USA and Chinese officials wrapped up three days of talks in Beijing without significant breakthroughs. However, the two-day vice-ministerial talks were extended till Wednesday which China said reflected the seriousness of the negotiations.

World markets retreated on Thursday after US and Chinese officials wrapped up three days of trade talks in Beijing without significant breakthroughs.

The USTR statement didn't say whether progress had been achieved on its main concerns. He did not elaborate.

World markets rose Wednesday on increasing optimism that the two sides would be able to hammer out a deal ahead of a March deadline and avert further import tariff hikes - though Asian stocks were mostly down on Thursday. Those include subsidies and other favors for high-tech and state-owned industry, rules on technology licensing and preferential treatment of domestic suppliers in government procurement.

China also proposed clear bans on forced technology transfer in new draft foreign investment legislation.

From January 7 to 9, a USA delegation was in Beijing for talks about trade issues amid an ongoing 90-day truce in the trade war.

Productive talks could be a boon to the economies of both countries, which spent most of 2018 mired in a trade war that imposed hundreds of billions of dollars in tariffs on each other's goods.

The talks "enhanced mutual understanding, and established a foundation for solving, each other's concerns", said the statement, stressing that both sides agreed to maintain close communication, while providing few other details.

Fears of a global slowdown and weaker corporate earnings - exacerbated by billions of dollars in tit-for-tat tariffs between the United States and China - have led to a sharp pullback on markets over the last few months.

United States officials have long complained that China has failed to live up to trade promises, often citing pledges to resume imports of American beef that took more than a decade to implement.

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The talks were the first face-to-face meeting between the two sides since their leaders met on December 1.

U.S. -CHINA TALKS: A U.S. delegation, led by Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish, will sit down for two days of talks with Chinese officials starting Monday.

"For the next step, both sides will continue to work hard together, and advance the negotiation work according to the original plan". Buying had slumped after China imposed a 25% import duty on U.S. shipments of oilseed on July 6 in response to USA tariffs.

"I think China wants to get it resolved".

Earlier this week, China approved five genetically modified (GM) crops for import, the first in about 18 months, which could boost its overseas grains purchases and ease United States pressure to open its markets to more farm goods. USA crude, which has jumped 15 percent in 2019, dropped 52 cents to $51.84 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

"Talks with China are going very well!".

One of the biggest challenges to any deal would be to ensure that China enforces whatever is agreed to stop technology transfers, intellectual property theft and hacking of United States computer networks.

It also said Washington and Beijing have discussed the need for the agreement "to provide for complete implementation, subject to on-going verification and effective enforcement".

Notably, in Thursday's press conference in Beijing, Gao avoided verifying some of the specifics of the USTR press release, including the promise for China to purchase increased amounts of USA goods as well as the specific list of issues covered.

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