US to delay or remove some tariffs against China planned for Sept. 1

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US to delay or remove some tariffs against China planned for Sept. 1

A screen above the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shows the rise of the Dow Jones industrial average shortly after the opening bell, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2019. AP-Yonhap

By Jodi Xu Klein, US correspondent

The US government said on Tuesday that it would delay or remove some tariffs against China set to take effect September 1.

The United States Trade Representative office announced the products will have tariffs delayed include "cell phones, laptop computers, video game consoles, certain toys, computer monitors, and certain items of footwear and clothing".

Some categories were being removed from the tariffs list because of "health, safety, national security and other factors" while tariffs on other items would be delayed until December 15.

The office said that a new 10 per cent tariff on about half the Chinese imports would still take effect on September 1, as announced by US President Donald Trump on August 1.

The delay on tariffs of about US$300 billion of Chinese consumer goods will allow US retailers to stockpile the products they need for the back-to-school and holiday shopping seasons.

When imposed, the tariffs may mean more job cuts and store closings for US retailers during this holiday season, as the fragile sector already faces decreased revenue due to online competition like Amazon.com.

US stocks rebounded on the announcement after the markets had dropped Monday on the prospects of the trade war escalation. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 1.44 per cent and the Nasdaq Composite was up 2 per cent.

Large televisions on display at a Costco Club store in Waltham, Massachusetts, USA 13 August 2019. EPA-Yonhap

Shares of Best Buy, the electronics retailer, shot up as much as 8 per cent in trading Tuesday morning, while those of Target were up 6 per cent. Tech stocks were also up, with Apple shares rising as much as 6 per cent early in the trading session.

US retailers are already cutting jobs at the highest level in a decade, losing almost 43,000 positions this year through July, up 40 per cent from the same period last year, according to a report from outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas.

The announcement to delay imposing tariffs "is welcome news for American businesses and consumers", according to a statement by the US Chamber of Commerce.

Earlier Tuesday, Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He, China's lead trade negotiator, reportedly lodged a complaint about the US decision to increase tariffs on Chinese imports.

In a telephone discussion, Liu had a "serious negotiation" with his US counterparts about the 10 per cent of duties slated to take effect on September 1, according to Chinese state news agency Xinhua.

US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping reached a ceasefire in the two nations' trade war at the G20 meeting in Osaka, Japan, in June.

Trump said at that time that the US would lift a ban against American suppliers from selling components to China telecommunications giant Huawei Technologies, a prohibition that had been enacted for national security concerns.

In this June 29, 2019, file photo, U.S. President Donald Trump, left, shakes hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping during a meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Osaka, western Japan. AP-Yonhap

But the two sides have made little progress since. Talks were reportedly not advancing on a number of issues key to US concerns, including China's reform of its market structure, its protection of US companies' intellectual property and its easing of forced technology transfers.

On August 1, Trump announced the new tariffs, citing a slowness by China to resume US agricultural purchases and its failure to stem the flow of the synthetic opioid fentanyl to the US.

US government clearance for American tech companies to supply some components to Huawei has also seemingly been suspended.

In retaliation China announced a suspension of all US agricultural purchases.

On the phone call Tuesday, China's Liu spoke with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Xinhua reported.

Also attending China's side of the call were Commerce Minister Zhong Shan; Yi Gang, the governor of the People's Bank of China; and Ning Jizhe, director of the National Bureau of Statistics of China.

The two sides have decided to have another telephone call in the next two weeks, Xinhua reported.


A screen above the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shows the rise of the Dow Jones industrial average shortly after the opening bell, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2019. AP-Yonhap

By Jodi Xu Klein, US correspondent

The US government said on Tuesday that it would delay or remove some tariffs against China set to take effect September 1.

The United States Trade Representative office announced the products will have tariffs delayed include "cell phones, laptop computers, video game consoles, certain toys, computer monitors, and certain items of footwear and clothing".

Some categories were being removed from the tariffs list because of "health, safety, national security and other factors" while tariffs on other items would be delayed until December 15.

The office said that a new 10 per cent tariff on about half the Chinese imports would still take effect on September 1, as announced by US President Donald Trump on August 1.

The delay on tariffs of about US$300 billion of Chinese consumer goods will allow US retailers to stockpile the products they need for the back-to-school and holiday shopping seasons.

When imposed, the tariffs may mean more job cuts and store closings for US retailers during this holiday season, as the fragile sector already faces decreased revenue due to online competition like Amazon.com.

US stocks rebounded on the announcement after the markets had dropped Monday on the prospects of the trade war escalation. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 1.44 per cent and the Nasdaq Composite was up 2 per cent.

Large televisions on display at a Costco Club store in Waltham, Massachusetts, USA 13 August 2019. EPA-Yonhap

Shares of Best Buy, the electronics retailer, shot up as much as 8 per cent in trading Tuesday morning, while those of Target were up 6 per cent. Tech stocks were also up, with Apple shares rising as much as 6 per cent early in the trading session.

US retailers are already cutting jobs at the highest level in a decade, losing almost 43,000 positions this year through July, up 40 per cent from the same period last year, according to a report from outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas.

The announcement to delay imposing tariffs "is welcome news for American businesses and consumers", according to a statement by the US Chamber of Commerce.

Earlier Tuesday, Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He, China's lead trade negotiator, reportedly lodged a complaint about the US decision to increase tariffs on Chinese imports.

In a telephone discussion, Liu had a "serious negotiation" with his US counterparts about the 10 per cent of duties slated to take effect on September 1, according to Chinese state news agency Xinhua.

US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping reached a ceasefire in the two nations' trade war at the G20 meeting in Osaka, Japan, in June.

Trump said at that time that the US would lift a ban against American suppliers from selling components to China telecommunications giant Huawei Technologies, a prohibition that had been enacted for national security concerns.

In this June 29, 2019, file photo, U.S. President Donald Trump, left, shakes hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping during a meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Osaka, western Japan. AP-Yonhap

But the two sides have made little progress since. Talks were reportedly not advancing on a number of issues key to US concerns, including China's reform of its market structure, its protection of US companies' intellectual property and its easing of forced technology transfers.

On August 1, Trump announced the new tariffs, citing a slowness by China to resume US agricultural purchases and its failure to stem the flow of the synthetic opioid fentanyl to the US.

US government clearance for American tech companies to supply some components to Huawei has also seemingly been suspended.

In retaliation China announced a suspension of all US agricultural purchases.

On the phone call Tuesday, China's Liu spoke with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Xinhua reported.

Also attending China's side of the call were Commerce Minister Zhong Shan; Yi Gang, the governor of the People's Bank of China; and Ning Jizhe, director of the National Bureau of Statistics of China.

The two sides have decided to have another telephone call in the next two weeks, Xinhua reported.




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