China, August 14:
A positive atmosphere has emerged ahead of an upcoming online meeting between Chinese and US trade representatives. Both sides have expressed their anticipation and understanding in the run up to the dialogue despite months-long tit-for-tat relations, and it is widely predicted that the phase one deal will carry on smoothly.
The review meeting itself means much more than its content as it signals the world’s two largest powers are now able to sit down and calmly conduct dialogues on key issues in spite of escalating tensions, Chinese experts said.
The phase one trade deal signed in January was hard won, the experts continued, and neither country is willing to sacrifice it amid souring ties as it is a crucial factor for China-US trade and economic relations, which ensure the stability of China-US relations.
Regardless of the US’ consecutive moves to prompt bilateral fallout in recent months – from shifting the blame to China for its own inadequate COVID-19 response to cracking down on Chinese high-tech firms – China has attached great importance to implementing the pact.
White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow on Thursday said the Trump administration is satisfied with China’s progress in meeting commitments to purchase US goods in the phase one trade deal.
The Chinese government has always kept its promises with regard to the phase one trade deal, and has endeavored to import goods from the US despite the COVID-19 pandemic weakening domestic demand in the first few months of the year, said Wei Jianguo, former Chinese vice minister of commerce and executive deputy director of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges.
“China has now chosen to solve the issues and compare notes via dialogue, indicating the country’s calm mind and fundamental hope: that negotiations and communications will continue,” Wei told the Global Times on Friday.
The upcoming dialogue may focus on how the trade agreement has been carried out so far and what both sides will do in the rest of the year, according to Gao Lingyun, an expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS).
Commenting on some US media reports claiming China is lagging in its annual fulfillment of purchase requirements under the deal, Gao said, “There is no stipulation in the agreement that China should purchase at a particular speed, and the pace is forecast to pick up in the second half.”