Trump extends China tariff deadline, cites progress in talks

US to delay further tariffs on Chinese goods

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday that he may soon sign an agreement with Chinese President Xi Jinping to end the trade dispute if their countries can bridge remaining differences, saying negotiators were "very, very close" to a deal.

Trump said Sunday there could be "very big news" in the next two weeks, and he planned to meet with Xi at the U.S. leader's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida if more progress is made.

Tit-for-tat tariffs between the world's two largest economic powers have disrupted worldwide trade and slowed the global economy since the trade war started seven months ago.

The President cited "substantial progress" on trade talks with China, pointing to "important structural issues including intellectual property protection, technology transfer, agriculture, services, currency, and many other issues".

The source familiar with the talks played down the apparent tension between the top trade negotiator and the president, saying Trump, a former NY businessman, had viewed MoUs from a real estate perspective, while Lighthizer had done so from a trade perspective.

Trump and Xi called a 90-day truce past year to give their advisers time to negotiate a deal. Assuming there's more progress, a summit will be planned at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida to conclude an agreement, the tweet said. A very good weekend for U.S. & China! U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday met with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He at the White House on bilateral ties and the ongoing bilateral trade talks. S & P 500 e-mini futures ticked higher after Trump's tweets on trade, suggesting Wall Street would open on positive footing on Monday morning.

Trump has made cutting a trade deal with China a priority.

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"I'm glad to see progress, and I'm glad to see the (U.S.) government sort out their issues before it gets to a big thing", Grubba, founder and CEO of Choo Choo Shoes, told Xinhua.

"Trump clearly wants a deal and so do the Chinese, which certainly raises the probability that the two sides will come to some sort of negotiated agreement, even if it is a partial one, in the coming weeks", said Cornell University economist Eswar Prasad, former head of the International Monetary Fund's China division.

USA semiconductor, chemical and auto firms, in particular, complain that Beijing has a variety of ways to obtain US technology, including by joint-venture requirements and by regulatory panels that pass along USA technology secrets to Chinese firms. The threat of tariff increases represented significant leverage for the Trump team as Beijing is trying to stabilize China's cooling economy.

The trade war was started by Trump over claims of unfair trading practices and intellectual property theft by the Chinese.

The two sides are working on a text that could top 100 pages, a person tracking the talks said. The Trump administration has said it will insist to strong enforcement measures as part of any trade deal after complaining that Beijing failed to act on past reform pledges. Washington and Beijing are looking at a 10-item list for that, including additional Chinese purchases of agricultural produce, energy and goods such as semiconductors.

For example, in the Paris climate accords, one of the reasons the US withdrew was because it required next to nothing out of China, which emits 9 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide every year and growing, compared with 5 billion by the U.S. The US Agriculture Department estimated this month that US soy exports would not return to their pre-trade war levels for another six years.

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