Thursday, May 27, 2021
The US and China’s top trade negotiators have held “candid, pragmatic” talks, in their first meeting under the Biden presidency.
US Trade Representative Katherine Tai and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He held a virtual meeting on Thursday.
Both sides said they discussed the importance of the trade relationship between the two countries.
The talks follow the Trump administration’s combative stance towards China and resulting trade war.
The Office of the United States Trade Representative said that Ms Tai and Mr Liu “discussed the guiding principles of the Biden-Harris Administration’s worker-centered trade policy and her ongoing review of the U.S.-China trade relationship, while also raising issues of concern.”
Both sides said they had agreed to continue their negotiations.
The Chinese Commerce Ministry said in a statement that both sides held “candid, pragmatic and constructive exchanges with an attitude of equality and mutual respect”, according to a report by state media outlet the Global Times.
It added that both sides saw “the development of bilateral trade [as] very important.”
Ahead of the talks Ms Tai told the Reuters news agency that the US still faced “very large challenges” in its trade relationship with China.
A bitter trade war under former President Donald Trump saw tariffs placed on a range of goods traded between the US and China.
The world’s two biggest economies signed a so-called “phase 1” agreement in January last year.
In that pact Beijing promised to increase its purchases of US products and services by at least $200bn (£142bn) over 2020 and 2021.