I am a tariff man, if a fair deal is made with China I will happily sign: Trump

WION Web Team
Washington, DC, USAUpdated: Dec 04, 2018, 09:44 PM IST

File photo of US President Donald Trump and Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping. Photograph:(Reuters)

Story highlights

Trump and Xi had decided to temporarily halt the escalating trade war with a 90-day freeze on tariffs

Days after concluding a "temporary deal" with China on trade, President Trump said negotiation had already started and "unless extended" it will end 90 days from the "date of  wonderful and very warm dinner with President Xi in Argentina."

"Bob Lighthizer will be working closely with Steve Mnuchin, Larry Kudlow, Wilbur Ross and Peter Navarro," the US president said in a tweet. Trump has appointed Lighthizer to oversee the new round of talks as the US administration seeks to take a hardline on the talks.


Trump and Xi had decided to temporarily halt the escalating trade war with a 90-day freeze on tariffs, allowing negotiators on both sides to strike a deal to do away with tariffs altogether.


"President Xi and I want this deal to happen, and it probably will. But if not remember, I am a tariff man," he said, adding,"when people or countries come in to raid the great wealth of our nation, I want them to pay for the privilege of doing so."

White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow had said the Trump administration expected the tariffs to drop to "zero".


"It will always be the best way to max out our economic power. We are right now taking in billions of dollars in tariffs," the US president asserted.

"If a fair deal is able to be made with China, one that does all of the many things we know must be finally done, I will happily sign," he informed.

However, despite President Trump's expectations, Wall Stree stocks fell on scepticism over US-China trade talks. The S&P technology sector fell 0.96 per cent, while industrials dropped 1.22 per cent as fears persisted on the success of the trade talks.

Trump has decided to levy tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports at 10 per cent from January next year and agreed not raise them to 25 per cent in the near future, at least for the next 90 days.

"China will agree to purchase a not yet agreed upon, but very substantial, amount of agricultural, energy, industrial, and other product from the United States to reduce the trade imbalance between our two countries," the White House had said after Trump-Xi talks.

"China has agreed to start purchasing agricultural product from our farmers immediately," he said.