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New round of Sino-US trade talks to begin

By JING SHUIYU and ZHONG NAN | China Daily | Updated: 2019-10-09 02:20
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File photo: the national flags of China and the US. [Photo/IC]

The planned new round of China-US high-level economic and trade consultations is expected to cover a wide range of topics, with business and trade experts hoping the two sides will reach a speedy resolution amid weak global market sentiment.

At the US side's invitation, Vice-Premier Liu He will lead a delegation to Washington for the next round of talks on Thursday and Friday, said the Ministry of Commerce. Liu will meet United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, the ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.

According to the statement, the Chinese delegation will include officials from the ministries of commerce, finance, industry and information technology, and agriculture and rural affairs, as well as the central bank and the National Development and Reform Commission.

Yang Weiyong, an economics professor at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, said the Chinese delegates' expertise will reflect to some extent the agenda to be discussed in the consultations.

Topics of discussions may cover trade, financial market opening-up, intellectual property rights and agriculture, Yang said.

"No matter how many obstacles that may stand in the way, I hope the two sides will seize the opportunity this time and create a win-win outcome," Yang said. "Both negotiating teams need to be flexible during the talks in order to work out a relatively comprehensive agreement."

Jens Puttfarcken, president and CEO of Porsche China, said the current scenario in the global economy is creating volatility and uncertainty, and businesses need to take actions to ease potential impact from these uncertainties as early as possible.

"For our part, we believe that there is no alternative to global free trade," Puttfarcken said. The German automaker delivered 42,608 vehicles to China in the first half of 2019, a year-on-year increase of 28 percent.

Chen Wenling, chief economist at the China Center for International Economic Exchanges, said that while taking part in the high-level economic and trade talks, China needs to deepen reform, further opening-up and make changes.

Chen said she believes that China will continue to discuss the topics with the US in line with the direction of reform and opening-up, international rules and core national interests.

It is in the two sides' best interests to reach an agreement that addresses key issues such as market access, intellectual property rights and joint-venture technology transfers, said a report prepared by London-based global information provider IHS Markit.

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