14:13 GMT +314 October 2019
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    Commerce Secretary-designate Wilbur Ross returns back to the hearing room after a brief recess on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017, at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Commerce Committee

    US Commerce Secretary: Beijing Reducing Auto Tariffs to Help Resolve Trade Row

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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - China's reported plans to reduce tariffs on American auto imports could be helpful in the ongoing trade dispute between the United States and the Asian country, US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Wednesday.

    On Tuesday, the Wall Street Journal reported that Beijing was planning to reduce import tariffs on US-made cars and purchase more American soybeans and other crops.

    "That will help a lot," Ross told CNBC when asked about China's reported plans.

    He added that one of the big beneficiaries of such a move would be German automaker BMW, which is the largest exporter of cars from the United States.

    "They export about 40 percent of their vehicles to China, so that's a very direct help to us and probably will be helpful in the talks we are having with the German auto manufacturers," Ross said.

    US media reported that China plans to roll back tariffs on US auto imports from 40 percent to 15 percent. The tariffs were raised in August amid escalating trade war between the two countries.

    Chinese Vice Premier Liu He told US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer of the decision in a call late Monday, the newspaper reported, citing a person familiar with the negotiations.

    READ MORE: US Should Drop its Strategy of Trying to Change China, Expert Says

    US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to a truce in their escalating trade war during their meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

    Trump agreed to suspend plans to raise tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese products from 10 percent to 25 percent in order to pave the way for trade talks with Beijing, but warned that if the negotiations do not succeed within three months, the tariffs will be hiked as planned.

    China and the United States have been engaged in a trade war after Trump announced in June that $50 billion worth of Chinese goods would be subject 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 duties on hundreds of billions of dollars worth of goods.

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    US-China trade war, US-China relations, tariffs, Wilbur Ross, China, United States
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