China, US to resume trade negotiations

Beijing, June 20 (IANS) Top officials from the US and China will resume negotiations to resolve the ongoing trade war between the two world powers, Chinese Commerce Ministry said on Thursday.
Ministry’s spokesman Gao Feng told reporters that the heads of the two economic and trade teams would hold trade talks according to instructions passed down from the Presidents of the two countries.
Without offering further details, the spokesperson said that Beijing’s stand regarding the conflict had not changed and urged Washington to resolve the main Chinese concerns in the next round of discussions, which should be held “as equals”, Efe news reported.
The announcement comes soon after US President Donald Trump said he would meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping during the G20 summit on June 28-29 in Osaka, Japan.
The two leaders had a telephonic conversation on Wednesday in which Trump expressed confidence that dialogue between the negotiating teams would help in ending the dispute “as early as possible”, while Xi acknowledged that ties with the US had “encountered some difficulties”.
Although both Beijing and Washington have often talked of “substantial” progress in negotiations and leaked news about an imminent deal, the last round of talks in May ended in a complete breakdown of negotiations.
Both sides had blamed each other for the deadlock. While the US said China had gone back on its commitment, Beijing said Washington continued to add new demands in each meeting, some of which undermined its sovereignty.
Trump’s reaction was swift. He fulfilled his threat of hiking import tariffs from 10 per cent to 25 per cent on Chinese products worth $200 billion. Beijing responded with a similar measure, imposing fresh tariffs on American products worth $60 billion.
The next exchange of blows took place when Washington banned Chinese tech giant Huawei in the US, citing threats to national security.
Beijing announced the establishment of a blacklist for foreign companies that “seriously harm Chinese firms’ rights and legitimate interests”.

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