US, China to resume trade talks in Washington amid low expectations

Published: August 22, 2018 16:38:54 | Updated: September 01, 2018 13:36:41


US and Chinese officials are set to resume contentious trade talks on Wednesday under the cloud of a prediction by US President Donald Trump that there would be no real progress, reports Reuters.

The discussions among mid-level officials could set a framework for further negotiations as each country prepares to hit the other with new tariffs on Thursday in a deepening dispute over China’s economic policies.

Trump has threatened to impose duties on virtually all of the more than $500 billion (392.06 billion pounds) of Chinese goods exported to the United States unless it meets his demands.

The two days of meetings are the first formal US-China trade talks since US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross met Chinese economic adviser Liu He in Beijing in June.

After negotiations in May, Beijing believed it had assurances from the US that tariffs were off the table.

But less than 10 days later, the White House said it would push forward on punitive measures.

China has said it hopes for quiet, steady talks to get “a good result on the basis of equality, parity and trust.”

Speaking in Beijing on Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said that now China and the United States have already started consultations they of course still hope for a “good outcome”.

Lu added that he didn’t want to make any statements or release any details while talks were ongoing.

“We hope that everyone can calmly sit down together and have earnest discussions toward an outcome that is in beneficial to both sides.”

The discussions among mid-level officials could set a framework for further negotiations as each country prepares to hit the other with new tariffs on Thursday in a deepening dispute over China’s economic policies.

Trump has threatened to impose duties on virtually all of the more than $500 billion (392.06 billion pounds)of Chinese goods exported to the United States unless it meets his demands.

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