President Trump to Meet With China’s Chief Trade Negotiator

President Trump to Meet With China’s Chief Trade Negotiator

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President Trump plans to meet with China’s Top trade negotiator Friday afternoon as the US forges a preliminary deal before tariffs on some Chinese imports more than 2X next month.

The meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Liu would cap the latest round of talks in Washington, with Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer leading the US delegation.

Plans for a meeting between President Trump and VP Liu signals optimism that talks are making sufficient progress to warrant another face-to-face meeting between the 2 men.

As the discussions continued Thursday, reports emerged that negotiators are working on MOUs (memorandums of understanding) that would form the basis of a final deal.

The MoUs would cover areas including agriculture, non-tariff barriers, services, technology transfer and intellectual property, according to a person briefed on the talks.

The US and China have set a 1 March deadline to negotiate an agreement before American tariffs on $200-B in Chinese imports rise to 25% from 10%.

China is proposing that it could buy an additional $30-B a year of US agricultural products including soybean, corn and wheat as part of this trade deal.

The US is also asking China to keep the value of the RMB Yuan stable to neutralize any effort to devalue the currency to counter US tariffs.

The White House declined to comment about a Trump-Liu meeting Friday.

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