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U.S., China Reach Preliminary Trade Agreements on Beef, Poultry
USAgNet - 05/15/2017

The Trump administration has reached new deals with China to ease market access for a variety of industries, including beef and financial services, as the White House makes progress on trying to soften economic barriers between the two sides.

According to the Washington Post, the 10-part agreement, announced by Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, comes as part of an ongoing negotiation between the two countries following a meeting between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping last month.

"We have some very big news," Ross told reporters last week. "U.S.-China relationships are now hitting a new high, especially in trade. We're announcing, jointly with the Chinese, the initial results of the 100-day action plan of the U.S.-China Comprehensive Economic Dialogue."

But experts were less impressed.

"China has made a few modest concessions that cost it very little, in areas strategically picked to maximize the political benefit to Trump," said Arthur Kroeber, managing director of Gavekal Dragonomics, an economic research firm in Beijing. "But the substantive impact on US-China trade and investment flows is pretty minimal."

Still, in a week of chaotic news from the Trump administration, White House officials pitched the agreement as a major breakthrough.

The new arrangements include an agreement from China to allow imports of U.S. beef, on certain conditions, by July 16. The United States has pressured China for years to allow beef imports, but the process has been constantly delayed.

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