China presses U.S. to cancel tariffs in test of bilateral engagement

WASHINGTON, Oct 8 (Reuters) – China said on Saturday it pressed the United States to eliminate tariffs in talks between the countries’ top trade officials that Washington saw as a test of bilateral engagement between the world’s biggest economies.

The virtual talks between U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai and China’s Vice Premier Liu He follow Tai’s announcement on Monday that she would seek “frank” talks and hold China to its commitments under a “Phase 1” trade deal negotiated by former President Donald Trump.

“The Chinese side negotiated over the cancellation of tariffs and sanctions, and clarified its position on China’s economic development model and industrial policies,” China’s Xinhua state news agency said after the talks, held on Friday Washington time.

Tai intended to use the call, the second between the two, to test whether bilateral engagement can address U.S. complaints about Beijing’s trade and subsidy practices, a USTR official said.

“Ambassador Tai and Vice Premier Liu reviewed implementation of the U.S.-China Economic and Trade Agreement and agreed that the two sides would consult on certain outstanding issues,” USTR said in a statement.

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Source: Reuters