US to delay China tariff increase: Donald Trump

Washington: US President Donald Trump on Sunday announced extension of the March 1 deadline for increasing tariff on import of Chinese products, saying there had been significant progress made in negotiations with a visiting trade delegation from the far-east nation.

Trump also announced that he will be hosting his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida soon, to ink an agreement. The exact date has not been decided yet. “I am pleased to report that the US has made substantial progress in our trade talks with China on important structural issues including intellectual property protection, technology transfer, agriculture, services, currency, and many other issues,” Trump said in a tweet.

“As a result of these very productive talks, I will be delaying the US increase in tariffs now scheduled for March 1,” said the US President. “Assuming both sides make additional progress, we will be planning a summit for President Xi and myself, at Mar-a-Lago, to conclude an agreement. A very good weekend for the US and China!” he said. A high-level Chinese trade delegation led by its Vice Premier Liu He concluded its latest round of talks with a US team led by US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

Following the meeting with Trump at the Oval Office, the Chinese delegation extended its stay in Washington DC by another two days. Trump and Xi during their December 1 dinner meeting in Buenos Aires decided to pause their trade war and negotiate an agreement by March 1. In the absence of such an agreement, Trump had warned that he would impose additional tariffs on import of Chinese products. On Sunday, Trump praised Xi for his help in North Korea talks. Trump leaves for Vietnam Monday morning to have his second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Hanoi on February 26 and 27.

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