US President Donald Trump has waged a trade war with China. (Photo Credit: File/PTI)
US President Donald Trump on Wednesday said the partial trade deal agreed with China last week is now being formally put on to the paper. On Friday last week, Trump said that the US has reached a "very substantial" Phase 1 trade deal with China. Echoing his words, China on Tuesday asserted that it was on the "same page" with the US on trade as it confirmed that the two countries are likely to sign a "phase one agreement" soon to end their trade war. "It (the deal) hasn't been papered yet, but it is being papered," Trump told reporters at the White House.
The US and China trade negotiations had collapsed early this year after Beijing backed off from a draft agreement that was negotiated over six months. "We were a piggy bank that everybody else was robbing," Trump said when asked about past trade deals with China.
He said earlier China used to win all trade deals, but now it would no longer happen. "I give China a lot of credit. I give the people who were running our country no credit," the president said.
Trump said China want to make a deal as "their economy has been hurt very badly by what we've done and the tariffs". China and the US have been negotiating a trade deal for more than 10 months now. Trump wants to reach an agreement with the Chinese that reduces the massive trade imbalance between the two major trading powers, which last year climbed to over USD 539 billion.
He also wants China to address the issue of theft of intellectual properties of US companies and their forced coercion inside China. The Trump administration had first imposed tariffs on Chinese imports last year in a bid to win concessions from China, which responded with tit-for-tat tariffs. The escalating dispute between the world's two largest economies has depressed stock prices and poses a threat to the global economy.
Both sides have made conciliatory gestures ahead of the next round of talks, but a deal remains elusive. The US postponed a further tariff hike on Chinese goods, and China lifted punitive duties on soybeans. The move helped both American farmers and Chinese pig breeders, who use soy as feed and are struggling with a devastating outbreak of African swine fever.