China trade war begins to thaw as new tariffs halted

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman greet each other at the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Buenos Aires

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman greet each other at the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Buenos Aires

US President Donald Trump and China's Xi Jinping agreed Saturday to suspend any new tariffs in the escalating trade war between the world's two largest economies, even if huge existing duties will remain in place.

In exchange, China agreed it was willing to purchase a "very substantial" amount of agriculture, energy and other goods from the United States to help reduce the trade imbalance. Saturday's meeting could be the first step toward easing trade tensions between the US and China.

According to Chinese media the leaders have reached a consensus that trade talks should continue and have agreed not to impose any additional tariffs, at least for now.

The two leaders, who were in Buenos Aires for a summit of the G20 countries, called it "a highly successful meeting", the White House said. "China has agreed to start purchasing agricultural product from our farmers immediately". "If at the end of this period of time, the parties are unable to reach an agreement, the 10% tariffs will be raised to 25%".

In his remarks, Wang did not specifically mention the 90-day time limit the White House said negotiations had to be completed by.

Tensions between Washington and Beijing have increased in recent weeks ahead of the high-stakes meeting between Trump and Xi.

Before being ushered out of the room where Donald Trump and Xi Jinping were to dig in to a menu of chewy trade negotiations, the reporters gathered there launched a deafening barrage of questions at the United States president.

The truce between the US and China emerged after a highly anticipated dinner Saturday between Trump and Xi on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Argentina.

On these issues, US President Donald Trump has taken a stance not shared by most of the other leaders.

In other key results from the talks, the US promised to uphold the one-China policy, Wang said, while China threw its support behind further meetings between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The U.S. delegation included Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin, Chief of Staff John Kelly, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, National Security Adviser John Bolton, Assistant to the President and Senior Adviser Jared Kushner, Assistant to the President for Trade and Manufacturing Policy Peter Navarro, and Assistant to the President for Economic Policy Larry Kudlow.

"It's an incredible deal", Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One, on his way back to Washington.

The declaration struck a neutral formula on trade, reading: "We welcome the strong global economic growth while recognizing it has been increasingly less synchronized between countries and some of the key risks, including financial vulnerabilities and geopolitical concerns, have partially materialized".

But in a rhetorical olive branch to Trump, Xi pledged to do more to open up China's economy.

During the meal, Xi also expressed sympathies for the passing of the former president, saying Bush, who also was once the USA envoy to China, had "made many contributions to U.S".

China's decision earlier this year came amid a period of heightening tensions between the US and China over trade and intellectual property issues.

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