China says ready to defend trade interests


U.S. and Chinese trade officials are set to resume negotiations on Thursday and Friday in the hopes of striking a trade deal.

Trump's raging tweet announcing the tariffs on Sunday caught some American observers by surprise, seeing as the U.S. and China had both recently expressed optimism about reaching an agreement soon.

American soy farmers have found themselves in the crosshairs of Chinese retaliation, and prolonging the battle will be even more damaging, Davie Stephens president of the American Soybean Association (ASA), said in a statement.

American Soybean Association President Davie Stephens, a grower from Clinton, Ky., said, "This is a predicament for soy growers". "We need a positive resolution of this ongoing tariff dispute, not further escalation of tensions". That belief, built up by Trump and several White House officials over the past several weeks, was undermined as the president said he would hike tariffs on China to 25% this Friday.

Trump, who has largely embraced a protectionist trade policy as part of his "America First" agenda, also has sought massive hikes in Chinese purchases of USA farm, energy and manufactured products to shrink a gaping US trade deficit with China.

Sanders told reporters earlier on Wednesday that the White House has gotten "indications" the Chinese delegation coming to Washington wants to make an agreement, following Trump's tweet this morning saying China still wants to cut a deal.

"China always believes that mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit are the premise and the basis for reaching an agreement".

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Mr Lighthizer, without giving details on specifically what promises China had broken, said: "We're moving backwards instead of forwards and, in the President's view, that's not acceptable".

USA stock futures briefly pared losses after Trump's tweets, though investors remained on edge after a two-day trade-fomented rout wiped out more than US$500 billion from the value of American equities.

The Dow lost almost 540 points during Monday and Tuesday amid the trade dispute, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq were down more than 2% after both hit all-time highs last week.

The world's top two economies have exchanged tariffs on more than $360 billion in two-way trade, gutting United States soy bean exports to China and weighing on the manufacturing sectors in both countries.

Although this round of meetings was anticipated as the final step before both sides called off the trade war, Trump officials have made a concerted effort over the past week for new laws and regulations for Chinese companies-which Beijing's government has said impedes on its sovereignty. They reaffirmed their plan to raise tariffs on a wide range of Chinese goods on Friday.

Investors have been hoping that China's April trade data would add to signs that its economy is beginning to steady, easing worries about cooling global growth. The developments raise the prospect that talks between the United States and China to resolve their trade war, now more than a year long, could collapse entirely. The United States has other trade-related issues on its plate: The European auto industry is also on his list and could get hit with tariffs.

"The trade war risk is now being confirmed", Kotok said.