If these consultations do not resolve the disputes, there will be a procedure for imposing customs duties or other sanctions. The deal ends more than two years of tense negotiations and threats of escalation that sometimes seemed destined to plunge the United States and China into permanent economic warfare. Mr. Trump, who ran for president in 2016 promising to crack down China, urged his negotiators to rewrite trade terms he said had destroyed American industry and jobs, and he imposed record tariffs on Chinese goods in a game of chance to get Beijing to meet its demands. The agreement subjects violations of monetary obligations to the enforcement mechanism of the agreement, which could give rise to US tariffs. Today, we are taking an important step that has never been taken with China towards a future of fair and reciprocal trade, as we sign the first phase of the historic U.S.-China trade agreement. Together, we are correcting the injustice of the past and ensuring a future of economic justice and security for American workers, farmers, and families. And it will be a great deal for both countries. That`s well over $200 billion and it`s going to grow every year. It also unites countries. “I don`t see a big change for us because of the deal,” said Charlie Zanker, a corn and soybean farmer in Hamburg, Iowa.
“It`s a global market now.” U.S. tariffs of 25 percent on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods previously imported remain immediately unchanged. These could be withdrawn as part of a Phase 2 trade negotiation, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Wednesday. But China has lifted very little of the tariffs it imposed on U.S. goods during the trade war, making it “unenforceable” to achieve that goal. The FT article stated that “the agreement allows most of the US tariffs on $360 billion of Chinese goods to come into force, while avoiding for the time being the risk of further escalation. However, the agreement provides for an enforcement mechanism that would allow the US to revive its tariff threat if China is found to be a breach of its obligations. “We really need the tariffs to get away,” said David Herring, president of the National Pork Producers Council and a pig farmer in Lillington, North Carolina, who attended the signing ceremony. The pact aims to open Chinese markets to more U.S. companies, increase agricultural and energy exports, and improve the protection of U.S.
technologies and trade secrets. China has pledged to buy an additional $200 billion in U.S. goods and services by 2021 and is expected to ease some of the tariffs it has imposed on U.S. goods. A senior Trump administration official later said China must make waiver declarations or tariff adjustments to fulfill its purchasing obligations. “I will agree to take these rights if we are able to do phase 2,” he said. “Although discussions on the next phase of the talks are expected to start after the phase 1 agreement enters into force in mid-February, there is no fixed timetable for their conclusion,” Politi added. It is not certain that a second agreement will be reached before the US presidential elections in November. The two sides did not immediately distribute copies of the agreement in Chinese, raising the question of whether the translation issues were fully resolved and whether the final text in the Chinese version would be as demanding of the Beijing government as in the English version. . . .