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China, US Made New Progress In Latest Round Of Trade Talks

BEIJING: China and the United States made “new progress” in the round of trade talks that wrapped up on Friday in Washington, China’s official CCTV broadcaster reported late on Saturday.

The two sides discussed draft agreement text on issues including technology transfer, protection of intellectual property rights, services, agriculture, the bilateral trade balance, and an implementation system, and will continue to talk on remaining issues, the state broadcaster reported.

The White House on Friday said after three days of trade talks with Chinese officials in Washington that the negotiations “made progress on numerous key issues” but “significant work remains.”

The statement from White House press secretary Sarah Sanders also said U.S. and Chinese negotiators “will be in continuous contact to resolve outstanding issues.”

The negotiations included intellectual property, or IP, forced technology transfer, non-tariff barriers, agriculture, services, purchases and enforcement, the statement said.

White house adviser Larry Kudlow, speaking on Bloomberg Television earlier in the day, said Liu was due back in Beijing after Friday’s talks, but the two sides would press ahead to resolve remaining differences by video link.

“There’s no let-up here, this is an ongoing process,” Kudlow said.

Washington also has demanded that Beijing curb industrial subsidies, open its economy wider to U.S. companies, and increase purchases of U.S. goods including farm and energy commodities to shrink the gaping trade deficit with China.

“We are making headway in a lot of areas. That includes enforcement, that includes IP theft, that includes forced technology transfers, ownership, cyberspace, commodities and all the rest of it,” Kudlow said. “Those are of course in the middle of the negotiations that are ongoing, but we’ve come further and farther than ever before.”

While some reform pledges by Beijing are largely set, including an agreement to avoid currency manipulation, an enforcement mechanism to ensure that China keeps its pledges and the status of U.S. tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods must be resolved.

The plan to continue the discussions was taken as a positive sign.

“The fact that they’re still talking – and talking positively about the discussions – suggests they both think they’re on the path to a resolution,” said Erin Ennis, senior vice president of the U.S.-China Business Council, which represents US firms doing business in China.