G20 leaders back WTO reforms amid global trade tensions

US China agree to trade war ceasefire

The President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, and President Xi Jinping of China, have just concluded what both have said was a "highly successful meeting" between themselves and their most senior representatives in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Beijing hopes to persuade Trump to abandon plans to hike tariffs on $200 billion U.S. of Chinese goods to 25 per cent in January, from 10 per cent at present.

Mike Starkey offloads soybeans from his combine as he harvests his crops in Brownsburg, Indiana, Sept. 21, 2018.

"It's a consensus that meets numerous U.S.'s biggest objectives", said the official.

Trump agreed not to boost tariffs on US$200 billion (RM836.9 billion) of Chinese goods to 25 per cent on January 1 as previously announced, while Beijing agreed to buy an unspecified but "very substantial" amount of agricultural, energy, industrial and other products, the White House said in a statement.

President Trump and the other leaders of the Group of 20 agreed Saturday to a joint statement that included support for trade reforms, which was a chief USA objective for the summit.

The White House said in a statement December 1 that Washington had also agreed not to raise tariffs on Chinese goods in January.

There was an implicit contrast in some of the tributes offered at the Buenos Aires summit between Bush and the current White House occupant, Donald Trump, whose disruptive brand of diplomacy has stoked the deepest divisions in the G20's 10-year history. During that time, the United States and China will negotiate a series of reforms, with neither side imposing additional punitive measures on the other.

The news is likely to bring cheer Monday to global financial markets, which have been sensitive to the escalating trade battles between China and the United States. USA agreed to postpone the additional tariffs.

In a long-sought concession to the U.S., China agreed to label fentanyl, the deadly synthetic opioid responsible for tens of thousands of American drug deaths annually, as a controlled substance. The White House released the names of the two delegations, totalling 20 people in addition to the two leaders.

Perhaps not since President Richard Nixon met Chinese leader Mao Zedong in 1972 have U.S.

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The G-20 meeting in Buenos Aires comes amid growing economic uncertainty and global displeasure with Trump's trade policy. United Nations officials branded the move "illegal" and it was condemned by the West.

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Leaders of the world's largest economic powers have agreed to overhaul the global body that regulates trade disputes, but they faced resistance from President Donald Trump over the Paris accord on climate change.

The United States and China, the world's two largest economies, will see Saturday if they can find a breakthrough to exit a spiraling trade war as their presidents meet at a tense G20 summit.

Trump has imposed import taxes on $250 billion in Chinese products - 25 percent on $50 billion worth and 10 percent on the other $200 billion.

A consensus appeared to be emerging at the two-day gathering of the Group of 20 industrialized economies for a joint statement that would back reforms to the crisis-stricken World Trade Organization amid growing global trade tensions, according to officials from the European Union and summit host Argentina.

An EU official said the language now being negotiated for the final statement of the G20 would also support reform of the multilateral trade body needed to improve its function.

"The two presidents agreed that the two sides can and must get bilateral relations right", Wang told reporters, adding they agreed to further exchanges at appropriate times.

"President Trump expressed his friendship and respect for Chairman Kim", it said.

"He was a terrific guy and he'll be missed. It's the way to push the limits of what is possible; understanding that every country has its preferences, values and interests, but we all agree on something: we want to promote sustainable development", he said. He said he looked forward to the dinner and discussion.

Trump counted a victory Friday for his brash strategy as the United States, Canada and Mexico signed a new trade deal, a successor to the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Trump and Xi will be seeking a way out of a trade war between the world's two biggest economies, while also saving face for their domestic audiences at home.

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