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Trump, Xi agree on tariff cease-fire, as trade talks continue

Chinese President Xi Jinping, right, and President Donald Trump at the square outside the east gate of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Nov. 9, 2017. (Pang Xinglei/Xinhua/Sipa USA/TNS)

This article was originally published by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and is reprinted with permission.

The White House says U.S. President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, have agreed on a 90-day cease-fire to their mounting trade war, as the world’s two biggest economies try to avert further escalation.

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

It also said a recently implemented tariff hike of 10 percent on some $200 billion dollars’ worth of Chinese products would remain unchanged.

China’s Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen also said the two leaders had decided to not impose new tariffs on other products.

The agreement came after a more than two-hour dinner between the two leaders, held on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Argentina.

The trade conflict began earlier this year when Trump slapped tariffs on imported Chinese steel worth more than $250 billion, consumer goods, and other items. China retaliated with import taxes on soy beans — a major American agricultural export — and cars and liquified natural gas.

The tariffs roiled financial markets and international supply chains.