Trump and Xi Move To Resolve Shutdown of ZTE Corp

15 May, 2018, 22:35 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • 2017 shows U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at their joint press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. ==Kyodo

"Everyone is looking for some kind of deal", he told Politico in an interview, adding that no agreement had been reached yet.

"A reversal of the ZTE decision could temporarily tamp down trade tensions by allowing the Chinese to make concessions to the USA without losing face", said Eswar Prasad, a professor of trade policy at Cornell University. "It's not clear, of course, if he's planning to really reverse it or think of a solution in a larger context, but it is something that is just out of the norm", said Amanda DeBusk, the chair of the worldwide trade and government regulations practice at the firm Dechert, LLP. "I think that's where we are as a group".

Today begins three days of trade hearings in which USA corporations will make their case against President Trump's proposed $50 billion in tariffs on Chinese imports.

Trump has long-promised to crack down on China and raised concerns about an all-out trade war after threatening $150 billion in tariffs and prompting China to retaliate. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said much the same on Monday. A high-powered US delegation met for a second day of talks with Chinese officials on defusing tensions that are propelling the world's largest two economies toward a trade war.

ZTE reached a settlement in March 2017 for violating USA export laws and paid penalties totaling $1.19 billion.

Chinese officials raised their objections to ZTE's punishment at trade talk in Beijing earlier this month, and the American delegation agreed to report them to Trump.

The comment took USA trade and security officials by surprise and prompted the president to say in a later tweet that ZTE buys a large amount of parts from US companies and the concession was part of "a larger trade deal with China and my personal relationship with President Xi".

As of Monday, the USTR's Office has received over 2,700 filings of written comments regarding the administration's tariff approach, with major USA business groups opposed to tariffs on Chinese products.

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It is no secret that the USA has a huge trade deficit with China.

Washington listed the items from China it proposes will be hit with an additional duty of 25% but within hours, Beijing hit back, announcing its own plans to levy a 25% tariff on USA imports that included beef, soybeans and whiskey.

"The Chinese have said 'we want to see the specifics.' We gave them all the specifics in terms of trade issues".

As part of this, they also entered into an agreement with the United States government. USA ambassador Terry Branstad was present at the meetings and said that China has not met pledges to open up its insurance and financial services area and it hasn't reduced auto tariffs.

"We're still very far apart", he said.

ZTE had earlier this month requested that the United States lift the seven year ban on USA companies supplying it with software and components.

Increasing U.S. exports of liquefied natural gas could also be an area where the two countries could agree, he said.

The widening trade dispute between the world's two biggest economies has taken a toll on both sides.

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