U.S. pushes China on promises after `in-depth' trade meetings

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The bellicose character of the Trump administration's stance was underscored by its provocative decision to send a US Navy destroyer into the South China Sea on Monday-the day the talks began-to directly infringe on Chinese maritime claims.

The 90-day time frame is a tight window in which to nail down deep changes to China's economic model, reforms which past US administrations advocated for years and USA lawmakers on both sides of the aisle support.

According to a brief statement from the Chinese Commerce Ministry, the two sides held an "extensive, in-depth, and detailed exchange" on trade issues, including structural factors.

Negotiators appeared to make more progress on areas such as plans by China to step up purchases of American exports, while giving U.S. companies greater access to its market in order to build confidence between the two sides after months of bitter confrontation.

U.S. -CHINA TALKS: Official statements released after the talks, which lasted a day longer than planned, did not say if progress was made on ending a tariffs battle that has shaken financial markets. The meetings in Beijing were not at a ministerial level, so were not expected to produce a deal to end the trade war.

The U.S. team in Beijing was led by Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish, and included under secretaries from the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Energy and Treasury, as well as senior officials from the White House. -China Business Council. "That is very positive".

Trump imposed tariff increases of up to 25 per cent on $250 billion of Chinese imports.

The USTR statement didn't say whether progress had been achieved on its main concerns.

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They were the first face-to-face meetings since Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump brokered a 90-day ceasefire in trade hostilities in December.

It's unclear from the U.S. statement how much headway negotiators made regarding USA concerns over forced technology transfers and cybertheft of trade secrets for commercial purposes.

It softened its stand by offering a mix of concessions by resuming purchases of United States soybeans, suspended punitive tariffs on imports of U.S. cars and toned down its "Made in China 2025" plan, which aimed at breaking the country's reliance on foreign technology and pull its hi-tech industries up to western levels. He added: "It's been a good one for us".

Such a move would likely prompt further retaliation by China, which has already levied tariffs on USA goods, further rattling investors who are nervous about a significant slowdown in China's economy.

For its part, Beijing is unhappy with USA export and investment curbs, such as controls on "dual use" technology with possible military applications.

"China's ability to use (North Korea) as leverage has diminished considerably since Trump opened his own channel to Kim", she said. "Instead of making honest efforts to solve its domestic problems, it resorts to unilateralism and protectionism, breaks the rules-based global order, coercing allies to accept unfair treaties, triggering trade frictions with China, and blocking technology transfer while trying to contain China's rise".

Trade in services with China (exports and imports) totalled an estimated United States dollars 75.0 billion in 2017.

Liu's appearance at the talks is a "symbol of Xi's personal buy-in" in the effort to reach a deal, said Leland Miller, chief executive officer of China Beige Book, a data-analytics firm that surveys companies across the Chinese economy.

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