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Trump presses the pause button for US-China trade war at G20 summit

At 29 July, 2019, G2O summit took place at Japan’s Osaka where leaders from G20 and EU were present including US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jing Ping.

There was a lot of rumors before the summit about the declaration from Donald Trump about the additional tariffs on Chinese Imports. But putting end to all the tittle-tattles, Trump sat with Xi Jing Ping and announced not to increase the additional tariffs and continue with the current one.

Trumph XI at G20 summit
Figure: The two leaders have presided over an escalating trade war. Courtesy: AP: Susan Walsh

In the summit, the two presidents sat for a discussion regarding the ongoing trade war between the two countries.

Although previously Trump had threatened to increase the tariff on Chinese goods to 25%, after the discussion with Xi Jing Ping at Osaka, Trump said that Washington wouldn’t be adding extra tariffs on Chinese goods worth $300bn.

US President also promised to approve the US companies to continue their selling to the Chinese tech giant Huawei. Although a few months ago, Washington had stated the tech company was a threat to the national security. But after Trump’s affirmation, we can hope that this issue has been resolved.

On 13 May, US govt. released a list of $300bn of Chinese imports that would be hit by additional tariffs on top of the regular rate of duty. These import materials include textiles, handbags, yarns, embroidery and leather.

It has been noted that if this tariff hit the market, an American family of four would be charged an additional $500 per year to cover the new cost on clothing, shoes, travel goods and other related items.

Key points:
  • China and the US have been embroiled in a trade war during President Trump’s first term
  • The countries have attempted to restart trade negotiations after they collapsed in May
  • Other G20 leaders have voiced concerns about the war’s impact on the global economy

Around 42% of clothes and 52% of shoes sold in the US in 2018 were made in China. If the tariff had increased, it would have created a challenging situation for both countries’ economy.

Although it hasn’t been clear if Trump has made a long-term decision of not increasing the tariff.

Although by pressing this pause button, it has been highly beneficial for American business and economy, it doesn’t mean that the trade war issue has fully been resolved. The two parties have a lot of sides still left to come into an agreement.

But for now, it is good news that the two parties sat in a discussion and come into a level-playing field of discussion.

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