China’s sur­plus with US drops to $296bn

Muscat Daily - - BUSINESS -

Bei­jing, China – China’s trade sur­plus with the United States nar­rowed last year as the world’s two big­gest economies ex­changed puni­tive tar­iffs in a bruis­ing trade war, of­fi­cial data showed on Tues­day.

The fig­ures were re­leased just a day be­fore the US and China are ex­pected to sign a ‘phase one’ agree­ment that marks a de-es­ca­la­tion in their two-year con­flict.

The peren­nial US trade deficit with China has been a ma­jor source of anger for Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump, who has slapped tar­iffs on hun­dreds of bil­lions of dol­lars worth of Chi­nese goods, trig­ger­ing tit-for-tat re­sponses from Bei­jing.

China’s sur­plus came in at around US$295.8bn in 2019, down 8.5 per cent from the pre­vi­ous year’s record US$323.3bn, ac­cord­ing to cus­toms data. In De­cem­ber, its sur­plus with the US was around US$23.2bn, down from US$24.6bn the month be­fore. As part of the in­terim trade deal, Bei­jing will buy an ex­tra US$200bn of US prod­ucts over a two-year pe­riod, ac­cord­ing to Wash­ing­ton of­fi­cials. China has yet to pub­licly con­firm the fig­ures.


An em­ployee works on a pumper truck pro­duc­tion line at a fac­tory in Zhangji­akou in north­ern He­bei prov­ince on Jan­uary 13

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