China lowers expectations for USA trade talks


With negotiations between Beijing and Washington getting underway on Thursday, market watchers say any concessions from China would be touted as a success from U.S. officials and that might fuel further yen weakness and gains in the Aussie dollar. "They want to make a deal, but do I?" Trump said on Twitter.

Top White House officials met with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He on Thursday as President Trump signaled that a trade agreement may be close behind, buoying US stock markets after a chaotic 12 hours.

But the atmosphere for the high-stakes parley was shifting rapidly.

The first minister-level meetings in more than 2 months between the world's two biggest economies are set to begin on Thursday.

USA duties on $250 billion in Chinese imports are due to rise in five days and there was no hiding the sharp deterioration in relations this week. Then, in August, the Trump administration formally declared China a currency manipulator. We have some tremendous deals under negotiation. "I meet with Vice Premier tomorrow at The White House".

Earlier this week, Washington increased pressure on Beijing over its treatment of China's Uighur Muslim minority by announcing commercial and visa restrictions.

The measures have outraged Beijing and in the process penalised major Chinese players in the artificial intelligence sector, in which both nations are intense rivals.

He is as usual engulfed in turmoil, facing Democrats' intensifying efforts to impeach him and stinging criticism from Republicans for effectively allowing a Turkish assault on US-allied Kurds by pulling American forces out of northern Syria.

But Bloomberg said late on Wednesday that the United States was weighing a currency pact with China as part of a partial deal.

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The New York Times reported that the United States is considering making concessions to China including issuing licences to U.S. companies allowing them to supply non-sensitive components to Chinese telecoms giant Huawei.

He said he hoped a productive meeting would persuade the Trump administration to call off or postpone plans next Tuesday to hike tariffs on $250bn of Chinese imports from 25% to 30%.

Earlier in the week, firebrand White House trade adviser Peter Navarro told NPR that Trump was uninterested in half measures, showing "steely resolve" instead.

"But China wants to make a deal very badly".

Washington accuses China of attempting to dominate global industry through massive state intervention in markets, theft of intellectual property, hacking and subsidies, accusations shared by Europe and Japan. While Trump committed to the move after meeting President Xi Jinping in June, no licenses have been issued yet.

But Chinese officials, surprised by the US blacklisting of Chinese companies, including video surveillance gear maker Hikvision, along with the suspension of USA visas for some Chinese officials, told Reuters that Beijing had lowered expectations for significant progress from the talks.

China's purchases of U.S. soybeans jumped in September after stagnating during the summer.

This is the 13th round of talks between the two sides and the world's two biggest economies are deadlocked over U.S. allegations that China steals technology and pressures foreign companies to hand over trade secrets as part of a sharp-elbowed drive to become a world leader in advanced industries such as robotics and self-driving cars.

Beyond tit-for-tat trading blows, the US-China trade war has spawned spin-off tensions.