China to temporarily slash tariffs on US auto imports

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Beijing, Dec 14 (IANS) China on Friday said it will suspend additional tariffs on imports of American-made cars and automobile parts for three months starting January 1 in an attempt to negotiate a trade deal with the US.

Citing the meeting earlier this month between US President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping, the Chinese Finance Ministry said that it will remove the additional 25 per cent tariffs on 144 American-made vehicles and auto parts and five per cent tariffs on another 67 auto items between January 1 to March 31.

This will bring China’s tariffs on American-made cars to 15 per cent, which is what Beijing applies on all automobiles imported to the country, the ministry said in a statement on its website.

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China increased tariffs on American-made cars to 40 per cent in July, in response to the first round of US tariffs imposed on Chinese imports that month.

The Finance Ministry described the decision to remove the tariffs as a “concrete action” aimed at helping to bring about a “mutually beneficial new Sino-US trade order”, CNN reported.

The decision to cut tariffs followed a 90-day trade truce declared by Trump and Xi on December 1 on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina. The truce delayed the increase in US tariffs planned on January 1 on Chinese products worth $200 billion to allow room to negotiate a trade agreement.

The ministry also expressed hope that Beijing and Washington would speed up talks to remove all additional tariffs imposed by both countries.

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–IANS

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