ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailMenu BurgerPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon SearchSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
Trade war

China and US remain at odds over timing of lifting tariffs

Talks to continue next week with Beijing seeking immediate end to duties

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, left, talks with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, center, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in Beijing Friday.   © Reuters

BEIJING/WASHINGTON -- The U.S. and China will continue trade talks in Washington on Wednesday after two days of discussions in Beijing this week failed to bridge the gap over how additional tariffs imposed on each other's goods would be eliminated.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Twitter Friday that he and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer "concluded constructive trade talks in Beijing," where they arrived the previous day to meet with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He.

"We are still making good headway," U.S. National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said in a CNBC interview.

But there appears to be disagreement over what should happen to the additional tariffs on each other's goods after a deal is struck.

China is insisting that all additional tariffs be removed after the two sides reach a deal. U.S. President Donald Trump, on the other hand, wants the duties kept in place for a "substantial period of time" to maintain pressure on China and protect any deal.

"We're not going to give up our leverage," Kudlow told reporters on Thursday. "It doesn't necessarily mean that all of the tariffs would be kept in place. Some of the tariffs would be kept there."

Kudlow's statement seems to suggest that the U.S. is seeking a gradual elimination of some duties.

China has not backed down on its stance. U.S. and Chinese leaders agreed to work on removing all additional tariffs in December, Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen said. President Xi Jinping's standing could be undermined if some duties remain.

Beijing has made some concessions, establishing laws to address U.S. concerns about intellectual property infringement and forced technology transfers. The China Securities Regulatory Commission said Friday that it would allow JPMorgan Chase to set up a brokerage joint venture, demonstrating the country's efforts to open its financial market.

Chinese officials fear, however, that they will draw Xi's ire if they receive nothing from the U.S. in return.

Given the difficulty of reaching a compromise, "Xi is wary about a summit with Trump," said a diplomatic source in Beijing.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends June 30th

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media