US, China to hold next round of trade talks on April 30

Washington, April 24: Negotiators from the US and China will meet in Beijing on April 30 for the next round of trade talks, the White House has said.The White House in a statement on Tuesday said the US delegation led by Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will hold parleys with the Chinese next week.The leader of the Chinese delegation, Vice Premier Liu He, will then travel to Washington for more discussions starting on May 8, according to the statement cited by Efe news."The subjects of next week's discussions will cover trade issues including intellectual property, forced technology transfer, non-tariff barriers, agriculture, services, purchases, and enforcement," it said.The two sides are seeking to end a bitter trade war that began last year as a result of US President Donald Trump's protectionist agenda and his criticism of China's trade policies.The negotiators have held several rounds of talks since December in a bid to reach an agreement as the dispute has heavily cost the two largest economies in the world and jolted financial markets.As the trade war protracted, Trump, after a round of parleys in February, said Washington was "doing very well in trade talks with China".He has demanded that a new trade agreement with China "must include real, structural change to end unfair trade practices, reduce our chronic trade deficit and protect American jobs".The US President warned late last year that, if no agreement was reached before March 1 he would raise the current tariff rate of 10 per cent to 25 per cent on Chinese imports amounting to $200 billion.The deadline was eventually extended and the talks have become more frequent.Since December, Beijing has taken goodwill measures, such as the lowering of tariffs on imported US vehicles, the resumption of the purchase of soybeans and the approval of a bill to prohibit forced transfer of technology.Washington is also demanding from Beijing to agree to a "no-retaliation" clause in the new proposed deal. This essentially means that the US reserves the right to impose tariffs on China in case of a dispute, but Beijing is not supposed to retaliate.China has rejected the condition so far.As a condition for not increasing tariffs on China, which affect textiles, food and fuel, Washington also wants Beijing to commit to structural changes in its economy to, among other things, protect intellectual property of American companies.

IANS

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