Business

China to cut tariffs on $104b in US imports

BEIJING : China said yesterday it will halve punitive tariffs on US$75 billion (S$104 billion) in US imports from Feb 14, a month after Beijing and Washington signed a truce in their long-running trade war.

The reduction will apply to levies of 5 per cent and 10 per cent that were imposed on more than 1,700 items in September, according to the State Council Tariff Commission.

Products that had been hit by the 10 per cent tariffs included fresh seafood, poultry and soybeans.

Tariffs also applied to items such as tungsten lamps for scientific and medical purposes, as well as some types of aircraft.

The move is aimed at "promoting the healthy and stable development of China-US economic and trade relations", the Commission said in a statement.

It added that the reduction will kick in on Feb 14 - the same day Washington is expected to halve tariffs on US$120 billion worth of Chinese products.

The Commission added it "hopes that both parties will be able to abide by their agreement, strive to implement its relevant content, (and) boost market confidence". Other retaliatory tariffs, however, remain in place.

The US and China in January signed a partial deal that dialled down tensions in their bruising trade war, with Beijing agreeing to buy an additional US$200 billion in American goods over the next two years.

As part of the phase one deal, the US would halve its tariffs on US$120 billion of Chinese goods to 7.5 per cent, and the Trump administration called off added tariffs that would have taken effect last December.

At President Donald Trump's annual State of the Union address this week, he said US-China relations are currently the "best" ever.- AFP

BUSINESS & FINANCE