To paraphrase Winston Churchill, it’s not the end of the US-China trade war, and it’s probably not the beginning of the end. The new Phase One agreement signed today in Washington by Donald Trump and China’s Vice Premier Liu He may only be the end of the beginning. Although the mood at the signing ceremony and presser was celebratory, the limited agreement still leaves significant tariffs in place in both directions while the two countries work on a broader Phase Two:
President Trump: "Today we take a momentous step — one that has never been taken before with China — toward a future of fair and reciprocal trade as we sign phase one of the historic trade deal." https://t.co/3UEoTAC7t8 pic.twitter.com/JETRG7NRpp
— ABC News (@ABC) January 15, 2020
The U.S.-China trade war is set to enter a new, quieter phase on Wednesday as U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He sign an initial trade deal that aims to vastly increase Chinese purchases of U.S. manufactured products, agricultural goods, energy and services.
The Phase 1 agreement caps 18 months of tariff conflict between the world’s two largest economies that has hit hundreds of billions of dollars in goods, roiling financial markets, uprooting supply chains and slowing global growth.