02:25 GMT +325 June 2019
Listen Live
    In this Sept. 16, 2018, photo, American flags are displayed together with Chinese flags on top of a trishaw in Beijing. The American Chamber of Commerce in China says Beijing will dig its heels in after U.S. tariff hikes and appealed for a negotiated end to their trade battle

    China's Commerce Minister Calls Trade Talks With US 'Extremely Difficult'

    © AP Photo / Andy Wong
    Asia & Pacific
    Get short URL
    0 50

    BEIJING (Sputnik) - Trade consultations between China and the United States, de-escalating a trade conflict, were "extremely difficult" due to the large differences between the two countries, Chinese Commerce Minister Zhong Shan has stated.

    "During the last 90 days, the sides held three rounds of talks at the high level. Chinese Vice Premier Liu He has recently visited the United States for the talks as the head of a Chinese delegation. The process of consultations was extremely difficult and time-consuming. Due to the difference in state systems, culture and the stages of development the two countries are very different", Zhong told reporters.

    He added that Chinese and US working groups were continuing consultations as a lot of questions remained unresolved.

    The statement comes after Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on 25 February the outcomes of the latest round trade consultations gave reason to hope Beijing and Washington would achieve stability in their bilateral relations.

    READ MORE: US-China Trade Deal Must Allow Unilateral Enforcement by Washington — Lighthizer

    US President Donald Trump tweeted after the talks that he would delay an increase in tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods that was originally set for 1 March. Trump also said he would be planning a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping to conclude an agreement to end the trade standoff, "assuming both sides make additional progress".

    China and the United States have been engaged in a trade conflict since last June when Trump announced the United States would subject $50 billion worth of Chinese goods to 25 percent tariffs in a bid to fix the US-Chinese trade deficit. Since then, the two countries have exchanged several rounds of trade tariffs.

    The seventh round of the China-US high-level trade consultations was held in Washington on 21-24 February.

    Related:

    China Commerce Ministry Refutes Renewed US Claims of Cybertheft
    China, US Resume High-Level Talks to Resolve Trade War - Commerce Ministry
    Germany Outpaces US as Leading Car Exporter to China - Commerce Ministry
    Tariff War Won’t Solve US Trade Deficit – China’s Ministry of Commerce
    Tags:
    bilateral relations, trade talks, Chinese Commerce Ministry, Liu He, United States, China
    Community standardsDiscussion
    Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik