U.S. and Chinese trade officials will meet in Beijing next week and the following week in Washington, DC, for another round of pre-tariff increase trade talks.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin will travel to Beijing next week for more trade meetings with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, according to the Wall Street Journal. Liu is expected to bring a Chinese trade delegation back to Washington, DC, the following week.
President Donald Trump delayed tariff increases beyond the March 1 deadline after what he deemed “very productive” February meetings with a Chinese trade delegation in Washington, DC. At the time of the meetings, Trump indicated he would “probably” meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mar-a-Lago in March. Later reports indicated that meeting could be pushed into April instead.
Upon delaying the tariff increases, Trump wrote, “Assuming both sides make additional progress, we will be planning a Summit for President Xi and myself, at Mar-a-Lago, to conclude an agreement. A very good weekend for U.S. & China!”
President Trump has repeatedly expressed that he believes China wants to make a deal and that some trade agreement will be reached; however, he has tempered expectations with the acknowledgment that it could fall through.
Agriculture Sec. Sonny Perdue revealed after the February trade meetings in D.C. that China had agreed to resume increased imports of U.S. soybeans despite previous tariff increases on the product. He said the amount agreed was an increase of ten million metric tons.
President Trump and Chinese President Xi forged, at a December 1 meeting at the G20 Argentina, the agreement to enter into a 90-day period of focused trade talks and halt to any further tariff increases. This made March 1 the deadline that Trump later extended.