Xi meeting to sign trade deal could be delayed until December

U.S. President Donald Trump meets with China's President Xi Jinping at the start of their bilateral meeting at the G20 leaders summit in Osaka Japan

China, US agree to roll back additional tariffs

Chinese negotiators want Trump to scrap tariffs on about $110bn of goods that were imposed in September and lower the 25% tariff rate on about $250bn of products that began previous year.

He added: "The trade war started with tariffs, and should end with the cancellation of tariffs".

The agreement came during talks aimed at working out details of a "Phase 1" deal announced October 12.

Gao stressed that equivalent cuts done at the same time by both sides would be an important condition to achieve a limited agreement that the countries agreed on last month.

"Given President Trump's love of tariffs, the additional element (of tariff rollbacks) may increase the risk and prolong the phase-one negotiation", said OCBC Bank's head of Greater China research Tommy Xie.

"The amount of tariff relief in phase one should depend on the content of the agreement", he said.

As China grapples with a protracted trade war with the USA and slowing domestic demand, the country's economy grew at the slowest rate in 27 years in the third quarter.

But markets have been buoyed this week by expectations of an interim trade deal.

A spokesman for the International Monetary Fund said an interim trade deal that rolled back some tariffs had the potential to improve its economic forecasts for 2020. That is depressing trade in goods from soybeans to medical equipment. Gao declined to say when and where such a meeting could be. But details have yet to be agreed on and earlier penalties stayed in place. Mr. Trump said China agreed to buy up to $50 billion of American farm goods. Beijing, which has described such a scale as "unrealistic", has apparently proposed yearly imports of around $20 billion, a level seen prior to the trade war.

But Chinese trade expert Huo Jianguo said the move was a vindication of Beijing's long-held position on the punitive tariffs.

There had been no indication whether Mr. Trump might agree, which raised the possibility of another breakdown in negotiations. Yet it will be the first figure that will raise more than a few eyebrows.

The Oct. 12 agreement helped to ease financial market jitters, but the two sides have yet to report progress on major disagreements over technology and other irritants following 13 rounds of talks.

"The question right now is what the two sides have actually agreed on - the market's focus has shifted to how the US may react to China's tariff remarks tonight or in coming days", said Tommy Xie, an economist at Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp.

That dampened hopes a face-to-face meeting might produce progress.

Reuters said the USA also has confirmed it, citing an anonymous US official.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said this week any "Phase 1" agreement would be general and cover trade in specific areas such as soybeans and liquefied natural gas.

"There are still hurdles to be overcome but it is encouraging that, contrary to last spring, Chinese negotiators are sending more positive signals, as well as their USA counterparts", said Raoul Leering, the head of global trade analysis at the investment bank ING.

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