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Trump says U.S.'s HK law doesn't help China trade talks

CommoditiesDec 02, 2019 10:39PM ET
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By Alexandra Alper and Se Young Lee

WASHINGTON/BEIJING (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday U.S. legislation backing protesters in Hong Kong did not make trade negotiations with China easier, but added he believes Beijing still wants a deal with the United States.

The law "doesn't make it better, but we'll see what happens," Trump said, talking to reporters. He gave no indication when the deal would be finalized, but two other U.S. officials said a deal could still happen this year depending on China's actions.

Washington and Beijing have yet to ink a so-called "phase one" trade agreement announced in October, which had raised hopes of a de-escalation in their prolonged trade war. The global economy has shuddered with each salvo of tariff hikes by the world's two largest economies.

"The Chinese are always negotiating. I'm very happy where we are," Trump said as he prepared to depart the White House for a NATO summit in London. "The Chinese want to make a deal. We'll see what happens."

Chinese President Xi Jinping said last month he wants to work out a trade deal with Washington, but broader bilateral tensions have flared amid U.S. legislative action supporting Hong Kong's protesters, and targeting camps for Uighur ethnic minorities in the western region of Xinjiang.

Trump last week signed a new law backing protesters in Hong Kong and threatened China with possible sanctions on human rights. Beijing in response barred U.S. military vessels and aircraft from visiting Hong Kong and sanctioned several U.S. non-government organizations. News site Axios also reported on Sunday the Hong Kong law stalled the trade deal.

Global Times, an influential tabloid published by the official People's Daily newspaper of China's ruling Communist Party, tweeted Tuesday that Beijing will soon release its so-called unreliable entities list imposing sanctions against those who harm China's interests.

The paper said China is expediting the process for the list because the U.S. House is expected to pass a bill on Xinjiang that will "harm Chinese firms' interests", and that "relevant" U.S. entities will be part of Beijing's list.

The U.S. Senate in September passed the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act of 2019, a bill that calls on China to end what it calls "arbitrary detention, torture, and harassment" of Uighurs and other ethnic Muslim minorities. The bill is being considered by the U.S. House of Representatives.

Global Times editor-in-chief Hu Xijin also tweeted separately on Tuesday that China could ban all U.S. diplomatic passport holders from visiting Xinjiang and may also impose visa restrictions against U.S. lawmakers and officials with "odious performance" on Xinjiang. He did not say how he obtained this information.

China's foreign ministry and the U.S. embassy in Beijing did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment on the reports of possible Chinese government action.

NEW TARIFFS LOOM

Experts and people close to the White House have said a China-U.S. trade agreement may not be signed until next year. But White House adviser Kellyanne Conway told reporters at the White House on Monday that the deal was still possible before the end of the year.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross cited a further 15% U.S. tariff on about $156 billion worth of Chinese imports set to take effect Dec. 15 as a natural deadline, and said time was running out for China to avoid it.

"If nothing happens between now and then, the president has made quite clear he’ll put the tariffs in," Ross told Fox Business Network.

Asked if the Trump administration was willing to roll back current tariffs on China, Ross added: "It all depends on their behavior between now and then."

Trump says U.S.'s HK law doesn't help China trade talks
 

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Comments (13)
Dong Chang
Dong Chang Dec 02, 2019 8:45PM ET
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signing the bill and activate the bill are totally different action against China. Do u have the gut to activate?
TA XVCI
TA XVCI Dec 02, 2019 1:08PM ET
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The downfall is coming before Christmas. All this hopium is fading slowly.. and will hit hard. We are at least going to have a huge downfall before election.
SaNHa Gabriel
SaNHa Gabriel Dec 02, 2019 1:08PM ET
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Trump os Breaking his reelection possibilities if this downfall come.
me ish
me ish Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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Trump wants to slow down the US economy now - why? He can put the brakes on now and then take them off a few months out from his re-election - the timing will be perfect for him. Secondly, he is massive amounts of personal debt - as is the Trump Corporation - so he wants interest rates at zero to reduce his massive interest payments to the likes of Deutche Bank - so by slowing the economy way down, he'll force the FED to reduce rates to zero which is what he's been calling for for months - everything he does, he's doing for his own personal gain - whether that causes pain to fellow yanks or the rest of the world, he cares not!
Jamie Urena
Jamie Urena Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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Lol... 1 billion dollars in debt. This guy has no money skills, but has only dealt with large money.
wolfy wolf
wolfy wolf Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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tell that to his blind faithful supporters
Zack Persie
Zack Persie Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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He just can't stop talking about making deal with China. Quite clear Trump is the one desperate for a deal. His deal making record with other countries now are way far behind Xi's deal making with so many countries todate. Trump is effectively driving US into isolation with his lousy deal making skill, driving even allies further away.
Elephan Mann
Elephan Mann Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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Why would he be desperate? Our markets are up 80%. Unemployment is at record lows. China NEEDS the buying power of America to survive, not the other way around. Chinas market is down 10% since 2016 and their banks are defaulting. Do you understand how market fundamentals work?
Al Vlaj
alvlaj Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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Elephan Mann because those that are making all the money are the centrists in wealthy blue states and the farmers who he hung out to dry dont benefit from a rising stock market and high unemployment when they are losing their property and ability to sell goods to buyers overseas. That’s why.
Al Vlaj
alvlaj Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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Elephan Mann and if you dont think that American consumers are not addicted to the cheap prices afforded us by Chinese manufacturing, you need to dig deeper in how fundamentals work. Markets are up on the technical of the Fed pumping it, NOT the fundamentals.
wolfy wolf
wolfy wolf Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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unemployment yes ..they are at record low. but quality of the jobs are down. you do get work but still you can't afford living necessities. Middle income segments are disappearing. lot of middle and small farmers are also disappearing. the only one that reap the benefits r Trump's own pockets n his rich croonies.
wolfy wolf
wolfy wolf Dec 02, 2019 11:41AM ET
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u work longer hours at much less pay. if that's what u call improvement...no comment.
Holly Sorensen
Holly Sorensen Dec 02, 2019 11:37AM ET
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yeah...well you dont make the world better...looking so forward to you being gone!
Yannis Yuan
Yannis Yuan Dec 02, 2019 11:35AM ET
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But it makes his election better.
Chris Sundo
Chris Sundo Dec 02, 2019 11:35AM ET
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Basically Trump is showing Americans what kind of crook he is because he is sure Americans will take all the kicking anyone wants to give them.  It shows there is no UMPHFF / reaction in Americans. Crooks can rob them blind and they will still take it ... Lame!
Chris Sundo
Chris Sundo Dec 02, 2019 11:28AM ET
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Trump is indicting himself. Are our lawmakers asleep at the wheel? --- He knew that he was further away from a deal with China after signing the HKG bill yet he claimed they are 'very close to a deal' --- So he purposefully lied to obtain a quick result .. Wouldn't be surprised if he traded the market with this insider knowledge and bending / violating securities law ----- S.E.C. --- where are you???? Sleeping as usual??   --- Letting crooks slip through the large cracks but holding the small guys to pay up big? --- What about Trump's tax returns?  ---- IRS --- where are you??? Sleeping as usual?  --- Letting crooks slip through the large cracks but holding the small guys to pay up big? -- Man, this country's administrative competency su'ck_s BIG TIME !!!!! --- When are Americans climbing the barricades HKG style?? ---- What about Medicare premiums that should be paid by financialy agile businesses rather than financially strapped citizens?? -- Canada has free medicare in 2020 January!
Steven Chen
Gamer_LG Dec 02, 2019 11:09AM ET
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trade deal is just closer everyday, yet they couldn't reach each other by the leg. I guess we need to redefine close in dictionary.
David David
David9 Dec 02, 2019 11:04AM ET
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I told you guys ... Trump has ruin his chance to get a deal after US meddles in China's internal affair. China doesn't want a deal. They want us to suffer in the stock market first before they will do a deal.
EODGC Rammnius
EODGC Rammnius Dec 02, 2019 11:04AM ET
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Considering China has suffered more, especially with that 9.9% fall of industrial profits, I question your logic here.
me ish
me ish Dec 02, 2019 11:04AM ET
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EODGC Rammnius the logic is perfect - the Chinese people can suffer loads - if you hadn't noticed, they live in a military dictatorship with a government owned media and firewall around the Chinese internet to prevent negative propaganda - compare that to the US with Trump attempting to be re-elected in just 12 months' time - Trump's supporters will be hurting big time in 12 months - you would have to live in China to really appreciate the difference and compare the two situations.
Thom Miller
Thom Miller Dec 02, 2019 10:44AM ET
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“We will see what happens?” Who’s Trump trying to kid? We all know what will happen. NOTHING! The Chinese no longer need to make a deal. And the stock markets are no longer taking Trump’s bait either.
Gods Money
Gods Money Dec 02, 2019 10:44AM ET
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Lets see. Stocks down today but wallstreet greed may be stronger than common sense.
me ish
me ish Dec 02, 2019 10:44AM ET
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Gods Money The FED is printing billions of new $$$$$s - whilst that's going on, and with two recent cuts in interest rates, the market can only mildly correct - for every person selling, the FED is printing to buy - unlimited new dollars available - long term the USD is dead, but they can kick the can down the road for at least until after the election and probably a whole lot longer - but the big powers outside of the US have had enough and are making plans to ditch the USD - and when it happens, it will drop like a stone. = obviously buy gold and silver now in anticipation.
Daniel Lim
Daniel Lim Dec 02, 2019 10:41AM ET
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Getting bored with the same old tunes!
Jilson Sebastian
Jilson Sebastian Dec 02, 2019 10:30AM ET
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Us president good desion. Keep it on future also
 
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