Mnuchin cautiously optimistic on trade

Clay Curtis
April 22, 2018

At the same time, Hammond said using tariffs was the wrong way to settle trade disputes, and he was urging China to do more to open its markets to foreign competitors, particularly in services.

Theft of American intellectual property and technology has been a key irritant in the dispute with Beijing, which prompted President Donald Trump to announce steep tariffs on tens of billions of dollars' worth of Chinese goods, on top of last month's punitive duties on steel that were primarily targeted at China as well.

China has threatened retaliation against US exports if Washington pushes ahead with the tariffs.

The International Monetary Fund's policymaking committee says a strong world economy is threatened by increasing tension over trade and a heavy global debt load.

IMF Managing Christine Lagarde warned earlier this week that a U.S.

With the U.S. turning away from multilateral trade liberalisation, after Donald Trump pulled the country out of the 12-member Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), China now has the opportunity to help to set the rules of engagement, it said.

"Our objective with China is to have free and fair and reciprocal trade", Mnuchin said Thursday.

While such a backdrop poses headwinds for confidence, there remains optimism among some officials that a deal will be reached to avoid tensions snowballing into a full-blown trade war.

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Peter Navarro, Assistant to the President for Trade & Manufacturing Policy and Director of the White House Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) report, while global trade will be overshadowed by the ongoing dispute between China and the USA, appetite for new free-trade deals will continue in the rest of the world including those involving India. "The discussions were really more around the governor's actions at the PBOC (People's Bank of China) and certain actions they've announced in terms of opening some of their markets, which we very much encourage and appreciate".

"We are close allies between the European Union and the United States".

Concerns included a possibly sharp tightening of financial conditions, waning popular support for global economic integration, growing trade tensions, risks of a shift toward protectionist policies and geopolitical strains. China counterpunched by targeting $50 billion in USA exports.

"It's a separate issue", the official said on condition of anonymity.

On March 8, the U.S. administration led by Donald Trump imposed broad tariffs on imports of steel and aluminium; while a number of countries were temporarily exempted from these tariffs, China and Japan were not.

A European official at the meetings said policymakers were trying to reduce trade pressures during the talks, but added that they wanted to "make sure there is a level playing field on trade, that China is in the same framework that others share".

"The IMF does not drive growth; rather, robust private sector activity, resilient financial systems, and worker dynamism fuel economic expansion and wealth generation", Mnuchin said. "A lot of these issues are not unique to the United States". -China trade deficit or hold out for fundamental changes in industrial policy.

"Increasingly we see instances where LICs (low Income countries) have borrowed excessively, and unsustainably, from large, often non-transparent emerging sovereign creditors like China and / or private creditors", he said.Clear restructuring rules do not exist for these cases, creating the risk of a complicated restructuring process, creditor losses, and a decline in real median incomes in the debtor country, the Treasury Secretary rued.

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