China conclude first talks since trade war ceasefire

Oil rises one per cent on US, China trade talk optimism

The discussions are the first face-to-face interactions between the US and China since both presidents met in Argentina and agreed to a temporary truce in their tit-for-tat tariff war. They include changes to China's policies on intellectual property protection, technology transfers, industrial subsidies and other non-tariff barriers to trade.

United States trade representative Robert Lighthizer, who Trump appointed to lead the China talks, is pressing for the USA to take a harder line in the negotiations. The statement said that the participants in the Beijing meetings discussed "ways to achieve fairness, reciprocity and balance in trade relations between our two countries".

While the hosts indicated the talks would run Monday and Tuesday, the editor-in-chief of the Chinese state-run Global Times newspaper said in a tweet the discussions could continue Wednesday.

The U.S. Trade Representative said China's delegation pledged to buy more energy and agricultural products and manufactured goods from the U.S.

Later this month, Lighthizer is expected to meet with Vice Premier Liu He, Xi's top economic aide who is leading negotiations for China, a person familiar with the situation said last week. But aside from some soybean purchases, there has been little sign of big-ticket acquisitions. Officials said details will be released soon. The truce took place at the G-20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and resulted in Trump postponing his planned tariff hike for 90 days while negotiators work towards a finalized deal. Yet an increase in American petroleum inventories on Wednesday served as a reminder that booming USA shale-oil production may still leave the global market with more supply than it needs. -China relationship for years.

Earlier this week, China approved five genetically modified (GM) crops for import, the first in about 18 months, which could boost its overseas grains purchases and ease USA pressure to open its markets to more farm goods.

Chinese exports to the USA have held up, despite tariff increases of up to 25 percent on US$250 billion of Chinese imports, partly due to exporters rushing to fill orders before more increases hit. Advocates of a quick deal with Beijing, including treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow, have used the markets jitters as a cudgel to press their case, the people said.

Stocks rose globally after the United States and China concluded talks and appeared closer to an agreement, with all major USA equities benchmarks rising.

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Companies in both countries are feeling the pain from the effects of the trade dispute.

Beijing has tried in vain to recruit France, Germany, South Korea and other governments as allies against Trump, but they have echoed USA complaints about Chinese industrial policy and market barriers.

"The officials also discussed the need for any agreement to provide for complete implementation subject to ongoing verification and effective enforcement", it went on to say.

Our Yoon Jung-min tells us more. If no deal were reached and United States tariffs were raised as threatened on March 2, Chinese growth would be hard hit.

China has also cut tariffs on USA cars, dialled back on an industrial development plan known as "Made in China 2025", and told its state refiners to buy more US oil.

The deputy level negotiators will report back on next steps for talks, the United States statement said.

A week ago, Apple Inc rattled global markets by cutting its own sales outlook, blaming weak demand in China.

By Thursday, however, the positive feelings ebbed because of a lack of a details on the talks despite a warm statement from China on the outcome, and financial markets took a breather from the rally. He added: "It's been a good one for us".

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