U.S., China to Resume Trade Talks as Tariffs Bite

A Chinese delegation led by Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen will meet with an American group led by David Malpass later this month

A Chinese delegation led by Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen will meet with an American group led by David Malpass later this month

China announced Thursday that it will send a delegation to the USA later this month for trade negotiations, after the two countries started imposing tit-for-tat tariffs on goods from each other and Washington tightened controls on investment.

A Chinese delegation led by Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Shouwen will meet USA representatives led by Under Secretary of Treasury for International Affairs David Malpass, the Ministry of Commerce said in a statement on its website.

A Chinese trade delegation will visit the USA this month to kick off a new round of talks, the first since negotiations broke down two months ago.

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Chinese Vice Premier Liu He held talks with US Commerce Minister Wilbur Ross in Beijing in June.

There also remains a wide gap between the two sides over Washington's demands that Beijing improve market access and intellectual property protections for US companies, and slash a $375 billion trade deficit with China.

Traders are also saying that short sellers are paring positions in response to the news that Beijing will be sending a delegation to Washington in late August to try to resolve the trade dispute between the world's two largest economies. Wang is also the deputy China global trade representative.

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Chinese stocks also reversed losses on Thursday morning after the announcement of further trade talks.

Easing trade tensions helped lift Chinese copper futures off 14-month lows.

The U.S. Treasury Department led by Steven Mnuchin has been viewed as most opposed to tariffs among key Trump administration agencies, espousing a more moderate approach to China than trade hardliners such as USTR's Robert Lighthizer. Donald Trump's administration is threatening further tariffs on $200bn of Chinese goods, in a bid to pressure United States companies to bring production back to the US.

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Washington slapped 25% tariffs on $34bn of Chinese goods in early July, leading Beijing to respond with similar levies, and further tariffs on $16bn of Chinese goods are due to come into effect on 23 August. But Trump backed away from the agreement and the two nations have been locked in a tit-for-tat trade war ever since.

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