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Trump Touts ‘Strong Signals’ from Xi as Trade Fears Return

6 diciembre, 2018

The president has said repeatedly that China will “immediately” begin purchasing more U.S. agricultural products and that it is prepared to drop its 40 percent tariffs on U.S. cars.





Alan Rappeport
c.2018 New York Times News Service

President Donald Trump tried to calm global markets and ease concerns that his trade truce with China was already floundering on Wednesday, declaring in a series of tweets that the Chinese government has sent “very strong signals” since Trump reached an accord with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Argentina last week.


Confusion about what Trump and Xi actually agreed to at their meeting, combined with Trump’s declaration Tuesday that he was a “Tariff Man,” roiled global markets Tuesday, ending a brief rally that began Monday after the two governments announced a 90-day truce.


While U.S. markets were closed Wednesday to honor the death of former President George H.W. Bush, Trump used the opportunity put a more positive spin on his negotiations with the Chinese.


“Not to sound naive or anything, but I believe President Xi meant every word of what he said at our long and hopefully historic meeting,” Trump wrote in a post on Twitter.


In a separate tweet, Trump pointed to a Bloomberg News report that said Chinese officials were preparing to restart imports of U.S. soybeans and liquefied natural gas. That report could not be immediately confirmed by The New York Times.


Trump and his advisers have been touting the agreement reached in Buenos Aires as a victory, saying that China had agreed to purchase $1.2 trillion worth of U.S. products and address its longstanding practice of requiring companies doing business there to hand over technology and trade secrets.


The president has said repeatedly that China will “immediately” begin purchasing more U.S. agricultural products and that it is prepared to drop its 40 percent tariffs on U.S. cars.


While China expressed confidence in the trade talks Wednesday, the government has yet to provide any specific details about what was agreed to during the meeting or confirm the items that Trump has cited. In a brief statement on its website, the Chinese Commerce Ministry said both sides would continue to put their trade commitments into effect.


As criticism mounted Tuesday that Trump had agreed to a hollow deal, the president issued a series of tweets saying he was prepared to move forward with additional and higher tariffs on China if it did not make good on its commitments. The tweets helped drive the stock market lower, with companies like Boeing and Caterpillar — which are heavily exposed to China — falling.


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