“We just achieved a breakthrough on the trade deal and we will be signing it very shortly,” Trump said at a Turning Point USA event in Florida
The Phase One deal was announced earlier this month as part of a bid to end the months-long tit-for-tat trade war between the world’s two largest economies, which has roiled markets and hit global growth.
Under the deal, the United States would agree to reduce some tariffs in exchange for a big jump in Chinese purchases of American farm products.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said last week the pact would be signed in early January, saying that the deal had already been translated and was just undergoing a technical “scrub.”
Trump says US and China ‘very close’ to trade dealUS President Donald Trump said on Thursday that Washington and Beijing were “very close” to reaching a trade deal.
Trump said Friday that he had a “very good talk” with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on a partial resolution of the countries’ huge trade war.
Trump tweeted that China “already started large scale” increases in purchases of US farm goods, in line with the deal. However, he did not give a date for when the so-called “phase one” agreement will actually be signed.
Had a very good talk with President Xi of China concerning our giant Trade Deal. China has already started large scale purchaes of agricultural product & more. Formal signing being arranged. Also talked about North Korea, where we are working with China, & Hong Kong (progress!).— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 20, 2019
“Formal signing being arranged,” he said.
The “phase one” is a partial resolution that is expected to see China boost imports of US agricultural and other goods, while Washington has eased massive tariffs on Chinese imports. However it falls a long way short of the fundamental changes in Chinese trade policies that Trump had sought and which will now be put off to a second phase.
The two economic powerhouses engaged in a trade dispute over a year ago, imposing billions of dollars’ worth of tariffs on each other’s goods.