Phase one of U.S.-China trade deal signed

China will increase purchases of U.S. goods and services by USD 200 bln over two years in exchange for the rolling back of some tariffs under an initial trade deal signed by the two countries on Jan.15, 2020, Reuters reports.

“Together, we are righting the wrongs of the past and delivering a future of economic justice and security for American workers, farmers and families,” U.S. President Donald Trump said.

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He read a letter from President Xi Jinping in which the Chinese leader praised the deal as a sign the two countries could resolve their differences with dialogue.

The centerpiece of the deal is a pledge by China to purchase at least an additional USD 200 bln worth of U.S. farm products and other goods and services over two years, above a baseline of USD 186 bln in purchases in 2017, the message reads.

Commitments include USD 54 bln in additional energy purchases, USD 78 bln in additional manufacturing purchases, USD 32 bln more in farm products, and USD 38 bln in services, according to deal documents released by the White House and China’s Finance Ministry.

As reported, the deal could be a boost to U.S. farmers, automakers and heavy equipment manufacturers, although some analysts question China’s ability to replace imports from other trading partners with more shipments from the United States.

Global Agriculture Columnist at Thomson Reuters Karen Braun commented earlier that China planned no expansion of its annual import quota for US wheat, corn and rice at reduced duty rates.

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