China’s promises in the Phase 1 trade agreement with the U.S. were not changed throughout a prolonged translation process and will be launched this week as the document is inked in Washington, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin stated on Sunday.
Mnuchin said the deal reached on December 13 still requires China to purchase $40 billion to $50 billion worth of U.S. agricultural produce yearly and a total of $200 billion of U.S. goods over two years.
White House officers had said as late as Friday that the final Chinese text was not yet completed, while invitations went out to over 200 people for a January 15 signing ceremony at the White House.
To date, Beijing has not confirmed those purchase promises, and recent government steps in the agriculture industry have raised questions over the $40 billion to $50 billion target cited by Trump administration delegates.
Chinese officers have been careful not to publicly talk about details of the Phase 1 agreement because Washington has changed its position a number of instances throughout discussions, three Chinese officers with knowledge of the state of affairs said last week.
The signing of the trade agreement Wednesday eases Trump’s 18-month trade battle geared toward deteriorating China’s trade and economic activities; however, it will leave in place tariffs on about $370 billion worth of Chinese goods per year.
Those are anticipated to be addressed in Phase 2 discussions, which the Trump administration wants to launch this year, protecting pricklier issues untouched by the Phase 1 trade agreement, such as Beijing’s heavy subsidies to Chinese state-owned businesses, restrictions on digital trade and cybersecurity issues.