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So close, but how far to a final US-China trade pact?

AFP, Reuters/Washington
Filed on December 14, 2019 | Last updated on December 14, 2019 at 06.18 am

(AFP file)

Reports Washington and Beijing had struck a bargain at last sent US stocks sailing to their first record closes of December.

The United States and China appeared close on Friday to a "phase one" deal to de-escalate a trade war that has caused tensions between the superpowers and threatened to wobble the global economy.

Reports Washington and Beijing had struck a bargain at last - subject to approval by US President Donald Trump - sent US stocks sailing to their first record closes of December.

"Getting VERY close to a BIG DEAL with China. They want it, and so do we!" Trump tweeted in a markedly optimistic tone on Thursday.

The tariffs "will not be charged because of the fact that we made the deal," he tweeted.

Trump said that existing tariffs of 25 per cent on $250 billion of Chinese imports will stay in place pending further negotiations on a second phase deal, along with 7.5 per cent tariffs on another $120 billion of imports.

A Chinese government notice said vice ministers of commerce, agriculture and finance, and senior economic officials was to give a press briefing late on Friday in Beijing on "relevant progress" in the US-China "trade consultation".


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