President Trump Signs Trade Deal With China

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On Wednesday, the U.S. and China signed an initial trade agreement that promises increased U.S. agricultural exports and reforms to China’s policies on intellectual property, technology transfer, and financial services. At a formal ceremony at the White House, President Trump called the deal a “beautiful mosaic” that was “doing many more things…than anyone thought possible.”

In front of an audience of Fortune 500 CEOs, lawmakers, and farmers, Trump defended the deal, applauding its “total and full enforceability” and saying his administration intentionally kept the details of it “totally guarded.” 

China will end its practice of pressuring foreign companies to hand over technological innovations in exchange for Chinese market access, approvals, and other advantages. China has also agreed to spend $200 billion over the next two years on U.S. food, agriculture, and seafood products and other services. The U.S. will reduce some of its tariffs on Chinese goods, beginning in November 2020.

For many Trump supporters, especially in the Midwest, Wednesday’s deal has been long-awaited. Manufacturing employment in the Midwest has slipped amid the trade war and the phase one deal should bring jobs and manufacturing growth to areas of the U.S.

Trump said phase two will begin immediately now that phase one has been signed. “We don’t expect to have a phase three,” he said.

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