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Trade war update — talks begin in Beijing

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The U.S. trade delegation has arrived in Beijing to talk to its Chinese counterparts about tariffs and trade imbalances.

  • The meetings “will be constructive as long as the U.S. delegation comes with sincerity,” said the Chinese foreign ministry.
  • “A breakthrough deal to fundamentally change China’s economic policies is viewed as highly unlikely during the two-day visit,” according to Reuters.
  • Bloomberg says Chinese news media have been instructed “to refrain from reporting any material beyond official press releases” about the talks.
  • A ship carrying “58,503 tonnes of sorghum from the United States switched its destination from China to South Korea early on Thursday,” reports Reuters. The shipment is “one of almost two dozen bought by China but now stranded” after Beijing said it would levy large deposits on American sorghum.
  • “China won’t retreat from tech development programs” is how four scholars of China’s tech industry and policy understand recent Xi Jinping speeches. If they are right, Trump’s negotiators will get nowhere persuading Beijing to weaken its current industrial policies.

Previously in SupChina’s trade war coverage:

Understanding the Trump-China trade tangle: What happens next?

Jeremy Goldkorn

Jeremy Goldkorn worked in China for 20 years as an editor and entrepreneur. He is editor-in-chief of SupChina, and co-founder of the Sinica Podcast.