Date
24 April 2019
Donald Trump sits for an exclusive interview with Reuters journalists in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington on Tuesday. Photo: Reuters
Donald Trump sits for an exclusive interview with Reuters journalists in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington on Tuesday. Photo: Reuters

Trump: China resumes US soybean imports, may cut auto tariffs

US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that China has resumed purchases of a “tremendous amount” of American soybeans, and that he believes Beijing will soon cut tariffs on autos.

“I just heard today that they’re buying tremendous amounts of soybeans. They are starting, just starting now,” Trump told Reuters in an interview.

The Chinese government is “back in the market” to buy American soybeans after a Dec. 1 truce in the US-China trade war, he said.

Also, Trump said he expects China to soon cut tariffs on US autos to 15 percent from the current 40 percent level. 

“I think they’re looking to do it immediately, very quickly,” he said in the interview.

According to Trump, trade talks with Beijing are already under way by telephone, with more meetings likely among US and Chinese officials.

A Trump administration official earlier told Reuters that China’s plan to cut car tariffs was outlined in a phone call between Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping called a temporary truce in their trade war on Dec. 1.

The US president agreed to postpone for 90 days a Jan. 1 increase in tariffs on Chinese goods while the two sides negotiated over increased Chinese purchases of American farm and energy commodities, an end to forced technology transfers and stronger protections for US intellectual property in China.

Trump said on Tuesday that those negotiations are already taking place by telephone.

“We’ll probably have another meeting. And maybe a meeting of the top people on both sides,” he said. “If it’s necessary, I’ll have another meeting with President Xi, who I like a lot and get along with very well.”

Trump did not offer any timetable for further face-to-face meetings among US and Chinese officials, Reuters said. 

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CG/RC

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