China-US Trade Surplus Up in 1st Quarter, Down in March

Mae Love
April 14, 2018

Stock markets have since risen as Chinese President Xi Jinping has eased investor fears of a trade war by promising to cut import restrictions.

Wu Shicun, head of National Institute for South China Sea Studies, said the code being negotiated between China and ASEAN countries "should have some legally binding force". But Mr. Trump has defied that pattern. An estimated $5 trillion in global trade passes through the waterway annually, and China has constructed airstrips and other installations on artificial islands to enlarge its military footprint.

Concerns of a trade war have been rumbling since last month after Trump threatened a series of tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of Chinese goods, sparking tit-for-tat warnings from Beijing.

Only $3 billion in goods have been slapped with tariffs in the escalating spat - the USA targeted steel and aluminium while China took aim at pork and wine among a slew of other American products.

In 2017, China imported 1.4 billion bushels of US soybeans, 62 percent of total USA exports and almost one-third of our annual soy production.

The magnitude of the dispute - if the threats are carried out - would hit consumers and businesses alike.

China's southernmost province of Hainan is getting a package of favorable policies covering tourism, duty-free shopping and medical services that's created to help transform the island into an worldwide tourism destination.

Other military experts suggested that the Chinese exercises were meant to call attention away from the current tensions between the USA and Russian Federation over Syria, and that they represent a gesture of support for Moscow on the part of Beijing.

On Friday, Perry said the USA acted very strongly during the 1996 crisis because "it was more than a drill". -China analyst at the Atlantic Council, calls Trump's view of global trade "nutty" but acknowledges that his tough talk may be working.

According to the 2018 Business Climate Survey Report released by the American Chamber of Commerce in China, more than half of the surveyed U.S. enterprises are optimistic about the investment prospect in China, and 75 percent reported a profitable year in 2017, the highest proportion over the last three years.

Trump quickly thanked Xi for his "kind words" and pledged, "We will make great progress together!"

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China is unlikely to respond until Washington acts but might launch an investigation of imports of US corn and soybeans "as a warning shot", said Parker.

Xi told the assembled troops that China's need for a world-leading naval force "has never been more pressing than today" and urged them to devote their unswerving loyalty to the party, before watching through binoculars four J-15 fighter jets take off from the Liaoning, China's sole operational aircraft carrier.

"If you read carefully the speech Xi gave, you have to give Trump a fair amount of credit".

"Nonetheless, it's going to be worse before it gets better".

The confusion over Mr. Trump's stance on trade deepened on Thursday when he said, in a surprise move, that he was considering rejoining the multicountry trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership, after abruptly withdrawing the United States from the negotiations past year.

The drill is once again expected to raise alarms - not just for China's smaller neighbours but for Japan and the United States as well.

The stand-off has intensified over the massive trade deficit with China, which was a record $375.2 billion in 2017.

The trade balance is "not a good way to measure the health of a trade relationship", Colvin said. However, Chinese officials already insist companies aren't required to hand over technology, so it was unclear how policy might change.

"What's the endgame here?"

"We have repeatedly told the USA side that steel and aluminum imports from its ally Japan will not adversely affect America's national security, and that Japan should be excluded", said Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga.

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