No Progress on Key Issues with China, Just 45 Days Left in Trade Truce

Grassley (Pablo Martinez Monsivais / Associated Press)
Pablo Martinez Monsivais / Associated Press

Charles Grassley said Tuesday that the U.S. has seen no progress on crucial issues in trade talks with China.

Senator Grassley said his information was based on a report from United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

“He said that there hasn’t been any progress made on structural changes that need to be made,” Grassley told reporters on a conference call, according to a report from CNBC. “Let’s say that would include intellectual property, stealing trade secrets, putting pressure on corporations to share information with the Chinese government and industries.”

Tuesday marks the halfway mark in the 90-day trade truce agreed to over a December dinner between Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping and their top aides. U.S. tariffs are set to go up to 25 percent on $250 billion of Chinese goods at midnight March 2nd.

A delegation of U.S. officials traveled to China last week for the first face-to-face negotiations between trade officials from the two countries since talks last year broke down and both countries imposed tariffs on each others’ goods. Since the trade dispute heated up, China’s economy has shown signs of increasing weakness. The U.S. economy has continued to grow although growth is expected to slow down in the coming year.

A delegation from China is expected to arrive in the U.S. sometime in the next few weeks to continue the talks.

Grassley told reporters he thinks the talks can make progress because China’s economy has been hard hit by the trade dispute. Some members of the Trump administration think it will take China longer to come around to making the serious changes demanded by the administration and that tariffs may have to go higher.

 

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