China's vice premier Liu to visit US around the end of January

China's vice premier Liu He is scheduled to visit the United States on January 30th - 31st to negotiate on the trade issues between both countries.

Presidents of China and US Source: Bloomberg

China’s top trade negotiator will be heading to the United States (US) to kick off another round of trade talks between the two nations, as both parties continue to portray an interest to working together amicably to resolve their ongoing trade dispute.

Vice premier Liu He is scheduled to visit the US from January 30th - 31st for negotiations, at the invitation of US treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin and US trade representative Robert Lighthizer, the spokesman for China’s Ministry of Commerce Gao Feng told reporters in Beijing on Thursday.

‘They will work together to further implement the important consensus reached by the two state leaders,’ Mr Gao said, without elaborating more.

Mr Liu is China’s representative to lead the talks with the US and is known to be a top economic counsellor to China’s President Xi Jinping.

China turns to trade talks to support its economic growth

China will be hinging on the trade talks to aid as a boost to its sluggish growth and rising debt levels.

The country has been facing weak economic data in recent months with worsened factory sentiment, falling exports, and risks to deflation, all reflecting tell-tale signs of the country’s sputtering growth conditions.

China’s trade surplus for last year sank to the lowest since 2013, embedding signs of a likely slowdown in trade for this year amid a weak global economic narrative.

China is said to have lowered its economic growth target from last year’s rough target of 6.5%, to a range of between 6.0% and 6.5% for this year.

US and China concluded their first round of talks earlier this month, with China stating that the meeting had helped ‘laid the foundation for resolving issues of mutual concerns’.

According to US officials on the first talk, both parties broached on issues revolving around the purchases of US farm and energy commodities, as well as increased access to China’s markets.

China and the US are on a trade truce which started in early December. The truce has a deadline of 90 days.

If both parties do not reach a deal by March 2, the US will proceed with raising tariffs from 10.0% to 25.0% on an additional US$200 billion worth of Chinese imports.


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