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Chinese Envoy Going to US to Prepare for Trade Talks

BEIJING – A Chinese envoy will head to Washington on Wednesday to prepare for trade negotiations, Gulf Today reported Tuesday.
The announcement on Tuesday follows conciliatory gestures by both sides ahead of the October talks on their fight over trade and technology, which threatens to dampen global economic growth.
A deputy finance minister, Liao Min, will lead a delegation to Washington to pave the way for the 13th round of negotiations, the official Xinhua News Agency said. It gave no details of their agenda.
The two governments have raised tariffs on billions of dollars of each other’s goods. That has battered farmers and manufacturers on both sides and fuelled fears in the global economy, which already is showing signs of cooling, might tip into recession.
Beijing announced on Friday it will lift punitive tariffs on American soybeans, China’s biggest import from the United States. That followed President Donald Trump’s decision to postpone a tariff hike on Chinese imports. But there has been no sign of progress on the core issues in their sprawling dispute.
Negotiations between Washington and Beijing broke down in May over how to enforce any deal.
Beijing says Trump’s tariff hikes must be lifted as soon as an agreement takes effect. Washington wants to keep some in place to ensure Chinese compliance.
Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed in June to resume talks but the last round in Shanghai in July produced no progress.
Washington wants Beijing to roll back plans for state-led development of leaders in robotics and other technologies that some American officials worry will erode US industrial leadership.
The World Bank and a Chinese Cabinet agency, in a report issued Tuesday, urged Beijing to open markets and curb subsidies and official involvement in technology industries that it says might hamper development instead of promoting it.
The report on China’s fledgling technology was commissioned three years ago, well before the trade war with Trump over trade and Beijing’s technology ambitions erupted.
It does not mention the trade war, though it focuses on the same policies that Washington, Europe, Japan and other trading partners say violate Beijing’s market-opening commitments.
Critics of those policies complain that they are based on stealing or improperly pressuring foreign companies to hand over technology and shielding Chinese industry from competition.
The report was issued by the World Bank, the Chinese Finance Ministry and the Cabinet’s Development Research Center, which represents the most free-market oriented wing of the ruling Communist Party.
It marks the third time the Washington-based bank and the DRC have collaborated on reports urging that the government scale back its role in the state-dominated economy. They have had a limited impact on policy.
“Developing new drivers of growth is becoming more urgent” due to a “complicated international environment” and weakening Chinese economy, a DRC official, Zhang Junkuo, said at a news conference.
The report portrays its recommendations as an extension of the ruling party’s market-oriented development plans.
(Sahar News Monitoring Desk)

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