China is set to end high-level trade talks with U.S. early - SCMP

Marco Green
October 10, 2019

On Thursday and Friday, Beijing and Washington are set to engage in the next round of trade talks led by Vice-Premier Liu He on the Chinese side and Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin on the USA side.

The South China Morning Post (SCMP) sent United States stock futures into a tailspin, reporting that the negotiations had reached an impasse with "no progress", and that Liu "may leave earlier than expected".

Notwithstanding the SCMP report, by all indications the talks are set to continue in Washington on Thursday and Friday, when higher level meetings will reportedly take place.

Liu is still set to leave on Friday evening, CNBC said, citing a US official.

Although some media reports suggested both sides are considering an "interim" deal that would suspend planned further US tariffs in exchange for additional purchases of American farm products, Trump has repeatedly dismissed this idea, insisting that he wants a "big deal" with Beijing that addresses core intellectual property issues.

"As of right now, (Trump) has not made up his mind, because he does not know what they're going to offer", the official said late on Wednesday.

The Chinese delegation refuses to talk about forced technology transfers, a core U.S. grievance in the negotiations, a person with knowledge of the meetings says.

Without significant progress during the talks, US President Donald Trump is set to hike the tariff rate on US$250 billion worth of Chinese goods to 30 per cent from 25 per cent next Tuesday.

Beijing had lowered its expectations for significant progress during this week's trade talks, Chinese government officials told Reuters News Agency, after the United States blacklisted more than two dozen Chinese entities on Monday.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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