BOFIT Viikkokatsaus / BOFIT Weekly 2019/42

Face-to-face trade negotiations between China and the United States took place on October 10–11 in Washington, DC. The parties said they had reached agreement in principle on a temporary arrangement (“phase one”), but the details of the deal remain open. Nothing was signed and there was no clarity on how the talks would proceed. Most of the thorny issues remain unresolved or have been intentionally excluded from the negotiations.

One concrete achievement of the latest round of talks was a promise from China to annually purchase 40–50 billion dollars in agricultural products from the US. The parties have apparently also reached agreement on dispute resolution and implementation mechanisms. The resumption of talks was sufficient for the US to call off its planned tariff hikes set to go into effect in mid-October. Trade negotiations, however, are still clouded by, among other things, US tariff hikes scheduled for December.