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China, US to discuss trade, economic issues

By Chen Weihu in Washington | China Daily USA | Updated: 2017-07-13 10:32

Senior Chinese and US government officials will meet in Washington next week for the first round of a comprehensive economic dialogue to discuss economic and trade issues of mutual concern.

The first round of the Comprehensive Economic Dialogue will come 10 days after President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump met on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany.

The dialogue will be co-chaired by Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Yang, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang announced on Tuesday.

During the meeting between Xi and Trump in Hamburg, the two sides agreed to hold the economic dialogue on July 19. They also decided to hold the first round of law enforcement and cybersecurity dialogue, and social and people-to-people and cultural dialogue in the near future.

Xi told Trump that the 100-Day Plan on China-US economic cooperation has made important progress, and both sides are discussing carrying out a one-year cooperation plan.

"The results so far in the 100-day program to improve trade and investment appear to have been more constructive than many critics argued, and it is possible there will be further progress at the CED on July 19," said Douglas Paal, vice-president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Paal also noted that the unhappiness of the White House with the lack of progress on China constraining the Democratic People's Republic of Korea may lead to authorization of Section 301 of the 1974 Trade Act or Section 232 of the 1962 Trade Expansion act against steel and other commodities from industries where China has significant overcapacity.

Section 301 provides the US with the authority to enforce trade agreements, resolve trade disputes and open foreign markets to US goods and services. Section 232 authorizes the Secretary of Commerce to conduct comprehensive investigations to determine the effects of imports on US national security.

In Beijing on Wednesday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng said the two sides have vigorously advanced the 100-Day Action Plan for China-US economic cooperation since the first meeting between Xi and Trump in Florida in early April.

"In early May, China and the US reaped a series of early harvests," he said.

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