Trump claims 'BIG leap forward' in China trade talks, but details unclear

Lloyd Doyle
December 4, 2018

"But if not remember, I am a Tariff man", he tweeted.

The president's Treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, told reporters Monday that there will be "specific changes right away" to help the agricultural industry, even as the majority of the tentative agreement remains to be worked out over a 90-day-period agreed upon between the US and China.

Early Tuesday, Kudlow said the White House doesn't yet have a deal with China to reduce tariffs on US -made cars, backtracking from a tweet by the president just two days earlier.

However, while President Donald Trump has been talking up the truce brokered at the G20 summit as "an incredible deal" and potentially "one of the largest deals ever made", there is every reason to look closely at the fine print-or the lack thereof.

USA exports of cars and light trucks to China were worth US$9.5 billion in 2017 and have dropped off significantly since China imposed its retaliatory tariffs over the summer that gave exporters in Europe and Japan a significant advantage. The Trump administration has thus far applied tariffs to $253 billion worth of Chinese goods, and has threatened to apply 25 percent tariffs to another $267 billion worth of Chinese merchandise if this round of talks are unsuccessful. However, at least one major Chinese state media outlet mentioned it on its account on Chinese social media platform WeChat, referring to the White House statement.

Per the White House: "China will agree to purchase a not yet agreed upon, but very substantial, amount of agricultural, energy, industrial, and other product from the United States to reduce the trade imbalance between our two countries".

Trump said his team of trade advisers led by China trade hawk U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will determine whether a "REAL deal" with China was possible.

China will need to drop steep tariffs it imposed on a range of American farm products earlier this year before it can fulfill its pledge to buy substantial volumes of US goods, said Chinese traders on Monday. We saw how that panned out with the North Korean denuclearization talks, where Trump appeared to believe he'd walked away with more than he actually got, so there's reason to be skeptical until more details appear.

"Well, on the tariff raise, the President has said 90 days beginning January 1, which is when it was going to go - the 10 to 25 was going to go into effect".

Time is running out for the United States to ship soy before Brazilian farmers start their harvest, USA analysts said.

The tweet comes after the US and China emphasized different results from Sunday's high-stakes meeting between Trump and Xi.

"When people or countries come in to raid the great wealth of our Nation, I want them to pay for the privilege of doing so. It will always be the best way to max out our economic power". U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin revealed President Trump himself will be the main person in charge of leading crunch trade negotiations with China.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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