China said to agree to auto tariff cut as trade talks continue

After China Considering Easing Import Tariffs

After China Considering Easing Import Tariffs

"It is a reality that China is losing some of its cost competitiveness, especially in labour-intensive and low-value-added sectors", according to the report.

The move would not represent a new concession. They were frustrated and unconvinced by China's promises of sweeping changes to its treatment of American intellectual property and technology transfer as well as its commitment to increase its purchases of American goods. New sanctions targeting the offenders are also likely to be introduced.

This month in Argentina, President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to a truce that delayed the planned January 1 USA increase of tariffs to 25 percent from 10 percent on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods.

Administration officials believe that adding pressure on China will allow the United States to have leverage in negotiations with Beijing, introducing a proper mechanism for punishing China that could lead to changes in their counterpart's behaviour. The arrest in Canada last week of Huawei Technologies CFO Meng Wanzhou prompted worries those talks might be derailed. The disappearance of the former diplomat, Michael Kovrig, reportedly could further raise the tensions between China and Canada.

President Donald Trump agreed December 1 to postpone more US tariff hikes on Chinese imports for 90 days while the two sides negotiate over American complaints about Beijing's technology policy.

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Asian markets faced a fraught session on Wednesday as conflicting reports deepened confusion over Sino-US trade, while sterling was battered by talk of an imminent party coup against British Prime Minister Theresa May.

China's commerce ministry, in a brief statement, said Liu had spoken to Mnuchin and Lighthizer on Tuesday morning, Beijing time, on a pre-arranged telephone call.

Analysts remain sceptical that the two sides will be able to reach a resolution of the underlying issues by 1 March.

White House officials have maintained that the two matters are separate, but apparent agreements have faltered before. USA officials have previously stressed that the issue with Meng Wanzhou is completely separate from the trade negotiations and that they hoped that it wouldn't interfere with the economic discussions. A Canadian judge said this week he's not satisfied with a bail proposal by Meng Wanzhou, who faces extradition to the US over accusations she helped the company evade sanctions against Iran. "It is totally separate from anything that I work on or anything that the trade policy people in the administration work on".

Vice Premier Liu He spoke with US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on Tuesday, 10 days after presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping agreed to a truce that delayed a planned January 1 US hike of tariffs to 25 percent from 10 percent on $200bn of Chinese goods.

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