• Follow us


Trump-Xi trade talks at the G20: A look at some of the claims and promises | CBC News

In the end, Xi seemed to blink.

Speaking to other leaders at the G20 summit in Osaka, he suggested that China was ready to make concessions on tariffs, non-tariff barriers and protection of intellectual property.

Xi didn't frame them as concessions, of course. Rather, they were China's contribution to "pursue win-win outcomes through better co-operation," as the China Daily put it.

China's deputy foreign minister Zhang Jun had already set the tone with a statement that Xi was coming to Japan on a mission to "safeguard the international order based on international law, and safeguard international fairness and justice."

Even as China holds two Canadian citizens as bargaining chips (one of whom should have diplomatic immunity according to Canada), Xi's government presented itself in Osaka as a voice of reason and a paragon of the rule of law.

Trump holds off on new tariffs

Xi struck the same tone in his bilateral meeting with Donald Trump. 

"Co-operation and dialogue are better than friction and confrontation," Xi said just before he and the U.S. president went behind closed doors. 

The concessions China offered in that room do not end the trade dispute by any means, but they buy time for further talks. 

"For at least the time being," Trump said after meeting Xi, "we're not going to be lifting tariffs on China." 

But there will be no new ones.

"We agreed that I would not be putting tariffs on the $325 billion that I would have the ability to put on if I wanted."

Although the existing tariffs are already causing losses in both countries, many economists believe that expanding them to all Chinese imports would trigger a trade war that would hurt the whole world.

President Trump, however, described tariffs as a boon to the U.S. economy. Whether through misunderstanding or mendacity, he continues to insist that the cost of tariffs is borne by the foreign importer of goods, rather than by the American consumer — a view shared by almost no economist.

If the China deal fails, he said, "we have a tremendous ripe field of tremendous money that would be coming into our country."

A list of gives

Xi said China will unilaterally move to cut tariffs, and to ease non-tariff barriers to trade.

He promised changes to the so-called "negative list of access," an arcane web of rules that keeps some sectors and industries closed to investment.

Foreigners are subject to three different "negative lists" curtailing their access to the Chinese market. To navigate the labyrinth of rules, outsiders in China are often required to hire pricey consultants.

China has cut the list before, and Xi offered few details on how it will change in the future.

He also promised to open six new free trade zones in the country, and expand the existing one.

And he assured the world that a new Foreign Investment Law taking effect next Jan. 1 will strengthen protections for the intellectual property rights of foreign investors.

The theft or forced transfer of technology from U.S. companies to Chinese ones, as well as patent and copyright infringement, are long-standing American grievances.

But the reforms Xi announced in Osaka will likely fall short of satisfying U.S. demands.

History repeats?

When Trump met Xi at the last G20 summit in Buenos Aires in November, he also went into the meeting threatening imminent tariffs, and also emerged saying that he would give China time to show its sincerity.

Four months later, though, the U.S. did raise tariffs on about 40 per cent of Chinese imports, saying the Chinese had failed to deliver.

The seeds of failure lie in the two sides' different interpretations of what had been agreed.

Whether the Chinese are prone to over-promising, or whether Donald Trump is prone to exaggerating what others have told him (he is of course), the result is a mismatch of expectations.

It remains to be seen if that will happen again.

Trump's closing news conference in Osaka included statements about China's commitments like this one:

"China is going to start — they're going to be consulting with us, and they're going to start spending money, even during the negotiation, to our farmers, our great farmers in the Midwest. I call them the 'great patriots' because that's what they are. They're patriots. And China is going to be buying a tremendous amount of food and agricultural product, and they're going to start that very soon, almost immediately."

He added: "We're going to give them lists of things that we'd like them to buy."

While it is possible that China has indeed agreed to buy U.S. goods according to a list drawn up by the Trump White House — a notion so far removed from free trade that Adam Smith must be spinning in his grave — some of Trump's other statements during his news conference should encourage skepticism.

Dodgy numbers

For example, there's Trump's anecdote about how he used tariff money to make those patriotic farmers whole.

"They did lose a certain amount of money," he conceded. "I went to Sonny Perdue, who is our secretary of agriculture. I said, 'Sonny, how much money — in the best year — did China spend on our farms, in our farms, buying?'  He said, 'The best year, about $16 billion.'"

"And I took $16 billion out of those tariffs, and — essentially out of those tariffs  — and we're distributing it among farmers who have been hurt."

The numbers are false. China bought nearly $30 billion of US agricultural produce during the best years of the Obama administration, and is projected this year to buy only $6 billion. The compensation package falls far short of replacing those losses.

"I've made up for the fact that China was, you know, targeting our farmers," claimed Trump. "Because they know the farmers like me, and I like them. I love them. And they sort of love me, I guess, when you get right down to it."

Tariff whack-a-mole

Trump also repeated past claims that tariffs are both achieving their goal of chastening America's trading partners, and at the same time enriching America ("We're getting tens of billions of dollars from China coming in.")

He didn't mention new figures from the Commerce Department that suggest his tariffs are displacing imports from China with imports from other developing nations.

From January to April this year, Americans spent about 12 per cent less on Chinese imports than the year before. But U.S. imports from Vietnam increased by 38 per cent, those from South Korea by 17 per cent, and from Taiwan by 22 per cent.

To compound that irony, the Commerce Department suspects that many of those new non-Chinese cellphones, shoes and semiconductors are in fact the very same Chinese goods that were put under tariff, but that have now been re-routed through countries like Vietnam, and perhaps minimally modified along the way, in order to justify a tariff-free Made in Vietnam sticker.

In 2016, when Trump won the election, the U.S. trade deficit was $349 billion US. Last year it was $420 billion.

Huawei for later

One aspect of Trump's deal with Xi is of particular interest to Canada.

The company that has come to symbolize U.S. anger at China's trading practices is telecom giant Huawei, which has deep ties to both the Chinese Communist Party and the People's Liberation Army.

Trump appeared to kick that can of worms down the road, saying "We're leaving Huawei toward the end."

But in fact China already achieved a major breakthrough on Huawei, which is currently banned from buying U.S. equipment — and Trump told reporters at the closing news conference in Osaka that he will allow Huawei to buy products from American suppliers, as long as "there's no great national security problems with it."

"I said that that's OK, that we will keep selling that product," Trump announced, adding that "a lot of people are surprised."

In fact a lot of people, including Republicans like Marco Rubio, had begun to suspect that Trump was drifting toward just such a concession.

Lifting <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Huawei?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Huawei</a> ban would be catastrophic mistake<br><br>Recent study of Huawei devices found more than 1/2 had vulnerabilities exploitable by <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/China?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#China</a> intelligence<a href="https://t.co/15Mlh7DEpT">https://t.co/15Mlh7DEpT</a><br>more-vulnerable-to-hackers-than-rivals-equipment-report-says-11561501573 <a href="https://t.co/YOMt4nhg3L">https://t.co/YOMt4nhg3L</a>


After all, that already happened with another Chinese telecom company on the same Commerce Department ban list: ZTE.

ZTE had been accused of violating U.S. sanctions that banned reselling U.S. equipment to Iran, the same allegation made against Meng Wanzhou.

Trump himself drew the parallel in Osaka. "Who's done what I've done?  I took ZTE off, if you remember. I was the one; I did that. That was a personal deal …. and they paid us a billion-two. $1.2 billion."

In return, ZTE was removed from the Commerce Department listing that prevented it buying U.S. equipment, and there was no prosecution.

President Xi of China, and I, are working together to give massive Chinese phone company, ZTE, a way to get back into business, fast. Too many jobs in China lost. Commerce Department has been instructed to get it done!


In Osaka, Trump said he would look at removing Huawei from the list in the next few days, suggesting that it may be on track to receive a similar deal: listing and charges dropped in exchange for a cash shakedown.

Canadians part of the deal?

Past Canadian ambassadors and professional China watchers have told CBC News unanimously that they don't expect Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor to be released, except as part of a larger deal involving the U.S. complaints against Huawei and Meng.

So while it remains unclear whether Trump kept his promise to raise the case of two Canadians held prisoner by China (and he says he didn't discuss Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou), the Trump-Xi talks may have brought their day of freedom closer simply by moving the overall Huawei dispute closer to resolution.

Of course, a ZTE-type deal would also confirm in the minds of the Chinese what they have alleged all along: that the whole dispute was never really about national security in the first place, but just a pretext for attacking a successful commercial competitor.

Read More

Leave A Comment

More News

: Politics

As Canada-China relations worsen, a Trudeau cabinet minister 2019-07-03 17:56:05The Trudeau Liberals are defending a cabinet minister's business promotion trip to China while China has two Canadians -- including a business operat

Trump administration eyeing new properties to house unaccompanied 2019-07-03 16:48:20Existing migrant detention facilities, especially those housing minors, have become a flashpoint in the 2020 presidential race.

‘We need to get a handle on the 2019-07-03 16:43:52"There seems to be numbers flying all over the place from the experts to other organizations. So we need to get a handle on the exact count," the pr

Here’s why critics call Trump’s 4th of July 2019-07-03 16:39:42"There's also this sense of, 'is this really want our money to go?'" says one former American diplomat.

Trump raised Canadian detainees with China in ‘clear 2019-07-03 15:53:47Canadian officials have received confirmation that U.S. President Donald Trump raised the matter, a government source says.

After China meat ban, Bibeau says ‘too early’ 2019-07-03 15:34:24"We are still at the early stage of this issue," said Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau.

Nuclear arms treaty: How the U.S. and Russia 2019-07-03 15:31:46Since the Cold War, the INF Treaty has been a pivotal part of arms control and global security. Now, both the U.S. and Russia say they're out.

What Donald Trump is planning for 4th of 2019-07-03 14:55:54The president has been tweeting about the plans, and has promised "a show of a lifetime."

Trump suggests U.S. should start manipulating the dollar 2019-07-03 12:50:28On Wednesday, Trump accused China and Europe of playing a “big currency manipulation game.”

China scolds Canada for ‘mustering so-called allies’ on 2019-07-03 10:55:54A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Wednesday that "Canada knows exactly what the crux of the problem is."

As Russia broadens influence, here’s why Canada remains 2019-07-02 18:05:31"Russia's actions are not only a threat to Ukraine but to international law," Trudeau said.

‘The straw that broke the camel’s back’: Halifax 2019-07-02 17:34:10Michael de Adder, who has been drawing editorial cartoons for 20 years, was let go from N.B. newspapers after releasing a controversial depiction of D

CBC | Politics News

Ukraine's comedian-turned-president makes North American debut in Toronto 2019-07-02 07:32:52Ukraine's new president makes his North American debut in Toronto later today — more than a month before he is to visit the United States &mdas

Dominic LeBlanc's family, friends and neighbour win 5 2019-07-02 05:00:00Federal Liberals have been promising to appoint the "most meritorious jurists" to judicial vacancies, but most candidates winning judicial appointme

Indigenous and first-time voters split, new Canadians still 2019-07-02 04:00:00Liberal support has dropped among Indigenous voters and new Canadians since 2015, while they face stiff competition from the NDP among first-time vote

Former Thunder Bay-Rainy River MP John Rafferty dies 2019-07-01 15:27:46Former New Democrat MP John Rafferty, who represented the Thunder Bay-Rainy River riding on Parliament Hill for two terms, has died.

U.S. worried about condition of Canadian-American charged with 2019-07-01 14:00:24The condition of a Canadian-American man held on spying charges in Russia has worsened, according to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.

First Nation grand chief on hunger strike over 2019-07-01 12:55:35The grand chief of the Algonquin Anishinabeg Nation Tribal Council began a hunger strike Monday at midnight, protesting a lack of significant con

Trudeau warns against amplifying fears as Canada celebrates 2019-07-01 05:50:28Prime Minister Justin Trudeau warned against anyone trying to "amplify" Canadians' fears as he arrived on Parliament Hill in Ottawa for Canada Day

Canadians say country split between ordinary folks and 2019-07-01 04:00:00The term 'elite' has increasingly become one of the dirty words of politics. But why has it gained such traction as a political insult? And what&nbs

Two-thirds of Indigenous people don't feel respected in 2019-07-01 04:00:00Two-thirds of Indigenous people surveyed feel that the federal government does not respect their community and identity. It's one of the many finding

Early release of party platforms a sign of 2019-06-30 16:00:00In this week’s Canada Votes newsletter: Why parties are pushing their platforms out early. Also: Which parties are losing supporters from 2015 -

Stephen Harper offers help on Brexit, but staying 2019-06-30 14:06:03Former Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper says he's willing to help the next British prime minister negotiate a divorce deal with the European Un

Trump-Xi trade talks at the G20: A look 2019-06-30 08:50:19Amid promises made at the close of the G20 summit that U.S.-China trade tensions can be healed, it remains to be seen whether there is a mismatch of e

Breitbart News

Democrat Congressman Joins Nike Boycott Over Betsy Ross 2019-07-03 19:39:21Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL) joined the burgeoning backlash against Nike on Tuesday over the shoemaker's decision to pull their America-themed 4th of Jul

Beto O'Rourke: White Nationalists Have 'Appropriated' the Betsy 2019-07-03 19:27:10Presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke (D) said Wednesday that he respects Nike's decision to pull its Betsy Ross flag sneakers and added that white n

Gun Maker Responds to Nike with AR-15 Parts 2019-07-03 19:03:34Palmetto State Armory responded to Nike's decision to pull its Betsy Ross Flag shoes by releasing gun parts with the flag etched on them.

Kamala Harris: 'We Have a Predator in the 2019-07-03 18:56:38Wednesday on CNN’s “The Lead,” host Jake Tapper played a clip of 2020 hopeful Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) calling President Donald Tru

July 4: Feds Warn of Possible Terror Attacks 2019-07-03 18:53:43Federal authorities, in the days leading to Independence Day, warned of potential, not specific, attacks against revelers at the hands of “homeg

Islamic Teacher Who Sent Porn to 15-Year-Old Gets 2019-07-03 18:41:27An Islamic teacher who taught at a mosque in Washington, DC, has been sentenced to ten years in prison for sending pornographic videos and committing

Tom Holland Says Marvel Films Need 'Gay Spider-Man' 2019-07-03 18:41:16Tom Holland, who plays Peter Parker in Marvel's latest superhero movie, Spider-Man: Far from Home, says it is time for a "gay Spider-

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Unveils 4-Point Immigration Plan (Point #2: 2019-07-03 18:23:40Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) has released a four-point immigration plan for dealing with the crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Pollak: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Deliberately Distorted What She Saw 2019-07-03 18:05:50Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a master at sensationalizing politics. But she is not a credible witness.

Rami Malek Demanded His James Bond Movie Villain 2019-07-03 18:05:27Hollywood star Rami Malek says he told the director of the next James Bond movie that he would not join the cast if the next villain was a terrorist d

Marianne Williamson Calls Trump's July 4th Event 'Heartbreaking,' 2019-07-03 17:48:57Williamson called President Trump's July 4th tribute to the military "heartbreaking" and "repugnant" in a tweet on Wednesday.

Iowa Poll: Warren and Harris Surging, Biden Loses 2019-07-03 17:29:24Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) have surged past former Vice President Joe Biden in Iowa after the first Democrat president

Politics – Macleans.ca

A new 338Canada/Maclean’s projection: Battleground Ontario is tightening 2019-06-30 16:06:23Philippe J. Fournier: The Conservative lead holds, but with rising fortunes in Ontario the Liberals' seat projection improves significantly The post

The meme-ification of Canadian politics 2019-06-28 12:12:40Matt Gurney: Just when it seemed our political discourse could not get worse, the parties have unleashed a new form of superficial messaging The post

Trudeau should try walking the walk on climate 2019-06-28 07:34:08Andrew MacDougall: Instead of jetting off to the G20 to be a fly on the wall in the Trump-Xi show, the PM could have made a real statement at home The

Ottawa and provinces pause carbon tax fight to 2019-06-28 07:00:11Politics Insider for July 28: Ford friends in high places, self-government agreements for Metis and China jets buzz Canadian ship The post Ottawa and

The Democrats in Miami, or half of them 2019-06-27 14:05:19Paul Wells: The field seeking to take on Donald Trump is overcrowded. The first debate on Wednesday made clear that's not such a bad thing. The post

What to watch for as Trudeau heads to 2019-06-27 07:00:26Politics Insider for June 27: Pork probe launched, the Legion boots bigots and the women running for Scheer The post What to watch for as Trudeau head

The missing outrage from Canada’s political leaders on 2019-06-26 17:51:29Anne Kingston: Maclean's contacted the Canadian government and political party leaders to request statements on the U.S. incarceration of children. A

Another swine mess we’ve gotten into with China 2019-06-26 07:00:34Politics Insider for June 26: Doug Ford nepotism scandal worsens, China bans Canadian meat and Kim Campbell disses Scheer climate plan The post Anothe

The compassion revolution hits Istanbul 2019-06-25 16:39:58Adnan R. Khan: The politics of division lost badly in Turkey's biggest city, hinting at a new way forward: "Everything will be beautiful" The post

The path to a Tory win: Quebec 2019-06-25 11:44:54Philippe J. Fournier: Are the Conservatives quietly making a breakthrough in Quebec? New polls show a glimpse of progress—and a big challenge. T

Whose side is Jean Chrétien on? 2019-06-25 11:25:42Terry Glavin: As China wages a political attack on Canada, the former PM's interventions give cover to Beijing—and to Meng Wanzhou's lawyers T

Everyone in Canada’s doing it 2019-06-25 07:00:35Politics Insider for June 25: A Ford fix, Meng's lawyers say 'let it go' and the Raptors not Washington-bound The post Everyone in Canada’s d

CTVNews.ca - Politics -

Algonquin Nation guaranteed space in Indigenous centre as 2019-07-03 13:29:04The Algonquin Nation will be guaranteed a space in a major Indigenous centre in Ottawa after an agreement with the federal government ended a grand ch

Governor General won't move into Rideau Hall until 2019-07-03 12:46:58The Governor General will not move into her official residence in Ottawa this summer and there is no date for when she might.

Coleman set for cross-examination today after judge clears 2019-07-03 11:26:50The sexual-assault trial of former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle will proceed today after the judge decided evidence given earlier in the trial is

Parties' financial returns show Tories topped Liberals in 2019-07-03 11:06:00Newly released federal party financial figures show the Conservatives entered this election year having outpaced the Liberals in fundraising by more t

Indigenous-led group ready to bid on majority stake 2019-07-03 10:07:00An Indigenous-led group says that it will be ready to submit a bid for a majority stake in the Trans Mountain pipeline and the expansion project as ea

China warns 'naive' Canada not to count on 2019-07-03 02:35:00China warned Canada not to be 'naive' and believe that U.S. pressure could help resolve thorny issues plaguing relations between Ottawa and Beijing.

Senate ethics officer asks upper chamber to be 2019-07-02 16:55:59The Senate's ethics watchdog is telling the upper chamber to provide him documents more quickly to speed up investigations and strengthen his indepen

On Hold: Veterans Affairs struggling to answer former 2019-07-02 14:57:00New figures show many veterans have had a hard time getting anyone to pick up when they call Veterans Affairs Canada's toll-free line for information

New Supreme Court ruling on sexual-history evidence delays 2019-07-02 11:18:00The sexual-assault trial of former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle is held up this morning while lawyers consider how a new Supreme Court ruling affe

Corruption in Ukraine hurts reform, U.S. envoy says 2019-07-02 04:13:00Ukraine's weak judicial system is hurting the country's prospects for reform, which is the only way it will ultimately overcome Russia's ongoing ag

Ukraine's comedian-turned-president makes North American debut in Toronto 2019-07-02 04:13:00Ukraine's new president makes his North American debut in Toronto later today -- more than a month before he is to visit the United States -- and the

Early electioneering? Where the party leaders are visiting 2019-07-01 15:13:54On the last Canada Day before the next election, the main federal party leaders are making campaign-style stops, and where they are visiting may offer

Disclaimer and Notice:WorldProNews.com is not responsible of these news or any information published on this website.