Chinese officials have announced a preliminary agreement on phase one of negotiations with the United States - and of course US President Trump has leapt onto his favourite digital soap box to add his cents worth.
Nothing has actually been signed but the text of the agreement has been drafted and agreed by both sides.
Trump confirmed on Twitter:
We have agreed to a very large Phase One Deal with China. They have agreed to many structural changes and massive purchases of Agricultural Product, Energy, and Manufactured Goods, plus much more. The 25% Tariffs will remain as is, with 7 1/2% put on much of the remainder....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 13, 2019
He said that Sunday’s extra duties would not be imposed and that his government would begin negotiations on the second phase of the deal immediately. The orange one previously mused that he may wait until after the 2020 election to start the next stage.
A new raft of tariffs were days away from coming into force, including a 10 per cent levy on laptops, games consoles, mobile phones, computer monitors and shoes.
Manufacturers ramped up production last quarter in a bid to avoid the tax hike, which could mean there are some sweet deals out there to be had by consumer and business buyers.
A statement from the US Trade Representative said the deal required China to make structural reforms and changes to intellectual property, technology transfer and financial services. China has also pledged to make sizeable agriculture and services purchases while the US agreed to significant changes to Section 301 tariffs.
The statement ended: “The United States will be maintaining 25 percent tariffs on approximately $250 billion of Chinese imports, along with 7.5 percent tariffs on approximately $120 billion of Chinese imports.”
In other news the US House Judiciary Committee has passed two articles of impeachment against President Trump after voting along party lines. He is accused of abuse of power and of obstruction of Congress. The House of Representatives will likely hold a vote next week.