US-China Tariff War – Cease Fire!

Courtesy of Our Man in DC – Peter Friedmann & the PCC

The U.S. and China announced a “cease fire” in the ongoing trade war.  The quick bottom line: while there is still much uncertainty, at least this delays increasing List 3 duties to 25% next month, and delays perhaps indefinitely implementation of the feared “List 4”, the “everything else list” (everything we import from China that has not yet been hit by tariffs), which would include footwear, apparel, consumer electronics, etc. So, at least for now, List 4 is off the table.

According to the official White House, the U.S. will not increase the List 3 duties from 10 to 25 percent on January 1 while the U.S. and China will begin negotiations on structural changes with respect to forced technology transfer, intellectual property protection, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and cyber theft, services and agriculture.  The negotiations are supposed to conclude within 90 days.  If the parties do not reach agreement at that time, the 10 percent tariffs will then increase to 25 percent.  A copy of the full statement is below.

While it is certainly positive news that there is a ceasefire, it is unclear what will happen with the negotiations, whether the ceasefire will be extended if negotiations aren’t concluded within the 90 days, etc.

They will be in DC, on the Hill and at the Executive Branch agencies, for the PCC Mission to DC, in March, right in the middle of the next steps for this tariff war. Mark your calendars – March 23- 26. Registration info coming.

Below are several links to stories about this weekend’s announcement, and the WH Statement.

White House Statement

Statement from the Press Secretary Regarding the President’s Working Dinner with China

Issued on: December 1, 2018

The President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, and President Xi Jinping of China, have just concluded what both have said was a “highly successful meeting” between themselves and their most senior representatives in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Very importantly, President Xi, in a wonderful humanitarian gesture, has agreed to designate Fentanyl as a Controlled Substance, meaning that people selling Fentanyl to the United States will be subject to China’s maximum penalty under the law.

On Trade, President Trump has agreed that on January 1, 2019, he will leave the tariffs on $200 billion worth of product at the 10% rate, and not raise it to 25% at this time. China will agree to purchase a not yet agreed upon, but very substantial, amount of agricultural, energy, industrial, and other product from the United States to reduce the trade imbalance between our two countries. China has agreed to start purchasing agricultural product from our farmers immediately.

President Trump and President Xi have agreed to immediately begin negotiations on structural changes with respect to forced technology transfer, intellectual property protection, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and cyber theft, services and agriculture. Both parties agree that they will endeavor to have this transaction completed within the next 90 days. If at the end of this period of time, the parties are unable to reach an agreement, the 10% tariffs will be raised to 25%.

It was also agreed that great progress has been made with respect to North Korea and that President Trump, together with President Xi, will strive, along with Chairman Kim Jong Un, to see a nuclear free Korean Peninsula. President Trump expressed his friendship and respect for Chairman Kim.

President Xi also stated that he is open to approving the previously unapproved Qualcomm-NXP deal should it again be presented to him.

President Trump stated: “This was an amazing and productive meeting with unlimited possibilities for both the United States and China. It is my great honor to be working with President Xi.”

Federal Government Closed on December 5th

Courtesy of The White House – Donald J. Trump

Washington, DC (WCMH) – President Trump has issued a proclamation for the closing of executive departments and agencies of the Federal Government on December 5, 2018, in honor of George H.W. Bush.

The proclamation reads:

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  All executive departments and agencies of the Federal Government shall be closed on December 5, 2018, as a mark of respect for George Herbert Walker Bush, the forty-first President of the United States.

Sec. 2.  The heads of executive departments and agencies may determine that certain offices and installations of their organizations, or parts thereof, must remain open and that certain employees must report for duty on December 5, 2018, for reasons of national security, defense, or other public need.

Sec. 3.  December 5, 2018, shall be considered as falling within the scope of Executive Order 11582 of February 11, 1971, and of 5 U.S.C. 5546 and 6103(b) and other similar statutes insofar as they relate to the pay and leave of employees of the United States.

Sec. 4.  The Director of the Office of Personnel Management shall take such actions as may be necessary to implement this order.

Sec. 5.  General Provisions.

(a)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(b)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

  • (i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or
  • (ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

DONALD J. TRUMP

THE WHITE HOUSE,

December 1, 2018

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