China, US discuss economic coordination, consolidation in trade meeting

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Beijing: US and Chinese trade envoys discussed strengthening coordination of their government’s economic policies during a phone meeting Tuesday, the Ministry of Commerce announced.

The announcement gave no details of the meeting held as part of the “Phase 1” truce aimed at ending a tariff war between the two biggest global economies that has disrupted worldwide trade.

President Xi Jinping’s government has lobbied Washington since at least 2016 to coordinate macroeconomic policies. Beijing has given no details, but such policies can include economic growth, employment, inflation and trade.

Tuesday’s meeting included Vice Premier Liu He, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, the ministry said.

“The two sides had a constructive dialogue on strengthening the coordination of the macroeconomic policies of the two countries and the implementation of the ‘Phase 1’ agreement,” a ministry statement said.

Under the “Phase 1” agreement signed in January, both governments agreed to suspend additional penalties on each other’s goods in a fight that erupted in 2018 over Beijing’s technology ambitions and trade surplus.

The truce called for talks to be held after six months, but those were delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. A meeting scheduled for last week was to be held online but was postponed.

AP

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