US, China to meet in September, but tariff hikes remain, says Trump
American trade groups and manufacturers have criticised the Trump administration's policies for hurting profits.
Washington - No grace period on those tariffs for Chinese goods in transit, US Customs and Border Protection agency declares
Trade teams from China and the United States continue to talk and will meet in September, but tariff increases on Chinese goods set to go in place on Sunday will not be delayed, President Donald Trump said.
The US president, who has alternated between expressing optimism about a trade deal and criticism of China for its economic policies, also said he thought the trade talks had led Beijing to be more restrained in its response to demonstrations in Hong Kong.
A tit-for-tat tariff war between the world's two largest economies now involves hundreds of billions of dollars of each country's goods and threatens global economic growth. Uncertainty about when or how the dispute could end has roiled markets and complicated corporations' long-term investment plans.
"We're going to win the fight," Trump told reporters. "We're having conversations with China, meetings are scheduled, calls are being made. I guess the meeting in September continues to be on, it hasn't been cancelled," he said. The White House has not announced a date for that meeting.
Tariffs kick in on an additional $125 billion in Chinese goods over the weekend, and Trump said that had not been changed despite more conciliatory language between the two sides in recent days. "They're on," Trump said of the tariffs.
Both sides are maintaining effective communication, China's Foreign Ministry said earlier.
The United States will begin collecting a 15 per cent tariff on an estimated $125 billion of Chinese goods at 0401GMT on Sunday, including smartwatches, flat-panel televisions and footwear.
There will be no grace period on those tariffs for goods in transit, the US Customs and Border Protection agency said on Friday.
Tariffs have been imposed on $250 billion of Chinese products so far since the trade war began in 2018, and American trade groups and manufacturers have criticised the policies for hurting profits.
"A lot of badly-run companies are trying to blame tariffs," Trump said. "It's not the tariffs, it's called bad management."
Bilateral trade talks could be complicated by Beijing's response to widespread protests in Hong Kong.
Trump has tied the two together before, saying earlier this month he believed Chinese President Xi Jinping wanted a trade deal, but that Xi should "quickly and humanely solve the Hong Kong problem."