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US, China hold more trade talks overshadowed by Kim visit

AFP  |  Beijing 

US officials held a second day of trade talks with Chinese counterparts in on Tuesday, overshadowed by an unannounced visit from North Korean leader Un.

This is the first time the two sides have met face-to-face since and Chinese leader agreed to a tariff truce during a meeting in on December 1.

The talks between the US delegation -- led by Deputy US Trade and including officials from the Treasury, Commerce, Agriculture and Energy departments -- and the Chinese side were still ongoing late Tuesday, a source told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Negotiators are seeking to resolve a number of thorny issues that have threatened an all-out trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

These include more Chinese purchases of US goods and services to reduce a yawning trade gap, increased access to China's markets, stronger protection of intellectual property and a reduction in Beijing's subsidies.

Neither side has provided any details about the talks.

The temporary ceasefire came after the two sides imposed import duties on more than USD 300 billion of each other's goods.

US said Monday that China's economy was more vulnerable to the fallout from the trade war.

"It certainly has hurt the Chinese economy," Ross told CNBC, noting that exports many more goods to the than the other way around.

Ross said there was a "very good chance" of reaching an agreement, although monitoring compliance would present a challenge.

Without a resolution, punitive US duty rates on USD 200 billion in Chinese goods are due to rise to 25 percent from 10 percent on March 2.

The second day of trade negotiations coincided with an unannounced visit by North Korea's Kim for talks with Xi in Beijing, amid speculation of a second meeting between Kim and Trump.

Some analysts say that -- Pyongyang's key diplomatic ally and main source of trade -- could use Kim's visit as a in the US trade talks.

But Bonnie Glaser, a at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said the timing of the North Korean leader's arrival could be coincidental.

"I don't see any linkage with the trade talks," said Glaser.

"China's ability to use (North Korea) as leverage has diminished considerably since Trump opened his own channel to Kim," she said.

Chinese said Kim's visit and the trade talks were "two separate matters".

"China's position in the China-US trade friction and its solutions to the friction is open, it's transparent," Lu said at a regular press briefing.

"We have shown our sincerity, we have established our stand in this, so we don't need other actions to gain the confidence of the US. The US is very clear about China's stance." A separate geopolitical issue angered on Monday when a US Navy guided-missile destroyer sailed near disputed islands in the Sea -- a vast expanse claimed by

China called it a violation of its sovereignty which has damaged "peace, safety and order" in the waterway.

The periodically sends planes and warships through the area to signal to its right under international law to pass through the waters.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, January 08 2019. 17:45 IST