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U.S., China Trade Talks Make Progress as Hearing Examining Tariffs Convenes

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

(North American Meat Institute)

Officials from the U.S. and China made progress last week in negotiations aimed at averting a trade war, after the Trump administration agreed to put a hold on proposed tariffs on up to $150 billion in Chinese products. China, meanwhile, agreed to reduce substantially the U.S.’s trade deficit, but did not commit to cut the gap by a specific amount; the U.S. is seeking to reduce its deficit with China by $200 billion. A team of U.S. negotiators, including Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, is expected to soon travel to China to continue the negotiations.

The high-level talks took place against the backdrop of a three-day hearing, convened by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), in Washington, DC, to receive public comments regarding the Trump administration’s proposal to impose more than $50 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods stemming from a Section 301 investigation of the country’s unfair trade practices. In advance of the hearing, the Meat Institute and U.S. Hide, Skin and Leather Association signed a multi-association letter urging the administration against levying the proposed tariffs on Chinese goods, citing the undue harm they would cause to the overall U.S. economy.

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