China may resume purchasing US farm goods


Trump made the announcement in a late Wednesday tweet, saying Chinese Vice Premier Liu He asked for the delay in time for the People's Republic of China's 70th anniversary October 1.

Beijing announced it was temporarily exempting some U.S. exports from tariff increases, a gesture that lifted equities markets long buffeted by the ups and downs in the conflict now entering its second year.

While that move may create some good will in Washington, China is keeping the pressure on USA agricultural exports like soybeans produced in key Trump-supporting states.

Trump's announcement came after China said earlier Wednesday it is exempting a handful of US products from the next round of sanctions set to begin September 17.

The exemption will take effect on September 17, the ministry said in a statement.

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The announcement is the latest in a flurry of goodwill gestures from both sides in a year-long trade-war that has weighed on the global economy. Moreover, major United States imports, such as soybeans and pork, are still subject to hefty additional duties, as China has ramped up imports from Brazil and other supplying countries. President Trump, who has threatened to raise those tariffs to 30%, has long held that trade wars "are easy to win" but talks with Beijing have proved more complicated than he anticipated.

Analysts say that with its duties on soybeans and US-made cars, China is taking aim at a key political support base of Donald Trump, mainly the factories and farms across the Midwest and South at a time of receding momentum in the world's top economy.

Reducing America's soaring trade deficit with China has always been a principal aim in Trump's trade battle with Beijing, which he also accuses of stealing American technology and unfairly intervening in markets.

Gao said working-level teams from both countries will meet soon to prepare for the next round of top-level talks between Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Still, some analysts argue the latest gestures by the United States and China have not brought a resolution to their trade row much closer.