G20 a chance for U.S. and China to mend relationship


The final communique of the G20 came ahead of talks between U.S President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping aimed at defusing a trade war.

Before Trump met his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, the USA had been scheduled to increase tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent on January 1.

The U.S. has agreed to delay by 90 days a planned increase in tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese imports so the two nations have time to iron out their trade differences - or at least attempt to do so, the White House said. Both parties agreed to complete negotiations within 90 days.

If there is no deal at the end of the 90-day grace period, the USA will increase the tariffs on the Dollars 200 billions of goods from 10 per cent to 25 per cent.

"This was an fantastic and productive meeting with unlimited possibilities for both the United States and China", Trump said in a statement released after Saturday's meeting.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping have pressed pause on the months-long escalation of their ongoing trade dispute.

Trump previous year declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency in the United States and brought up the issue with Xi when the two leaders met in Beijing in November 2017.

At the same time, USA farmers have been hurt by reduced Chinese imports of soybeans and other products.

Absent agreement in that time, tariffs now set at 10 per cent will be raised to 25 per cent, according to a White House statement. Trump has also threatened to put tariffs on another $267 billion worth of Chinese imports.

It was the first face-to-face meeting between the two leaders since Trump's China visit in November previous year and since both countries started imposing tit-tat tariffs on each other's exports.

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Trump and Xi are seeking a way out of a trade war between the world's two biggest economies, while also saving face for their domestic audiences at home.

Trump is believed to be trying not only to reduce the huge USA trade deficit with China but to sell US products in the Chinese market without fears of intellectual property and technology theft, the sources said. "The two sides chose to avoid escalation of trade restrictive measures and will work towards lifting all additionally-imposed tariffs", Xinhua said.

While Mr Trump has drawn praise for finally taking on China, his methods have raised fears of a deeper and wider trade war that would eventually cost more jobs than it creates.

In a statement from the White House, China has agreed to immediately start purchasing agricultural products from US farmers.

"He may not be a friend of mine anymore but I think he probably respects me", Trump said in September.

Xi, according to the White House, also told Trump he is open to approving the previously unapproved $44 billion bid by American semiconductor and telecommunication equipment manufacturer Qualcomm to purchase Dutch semiconductor maker NXP should the deal again be presented to him.

However, the US affirmed its "strong commitment" to economic growth and energy access and security, utilizing all energy sources and technologies, while protecting the environment.

As the consequential G20 meeting concluded in Argentina on Saturday, the deep schisms in global relations on everything from climate change to trade wars were on full display.

Earlier the United States president said he had postponed a planned press conference "out of respect for the Bush family", following the death of former President George HW Bush, at the age of 94. "It is also a reflection of the Argentinian government rightly making climate an important topic on the agenda". The White House released the names of the two delegations, totalling 20 people in addition to the two leaders.