President Donald Trump announced Tuesday that he’ll sign the first phase of a long-awaited trade deal with China in January at the White House.
“I will be signing our very large and comprehensive Phase One Trade Deal with China on January 15,” Trump told his Twitter followers. Phase one of the deal will put a temporary end to a yearlong standoff between Washington, D.C., and Beijing as both work on cementing a deal.
“The ceremony will take place at the White House. High level representatives of China will be present. At a later date I will be going to Beijing where talks will begin on Phase Two!” Trump added, noting that he will likely travel to China where officials will work on the second phase.
I will be signing our very large and comprehensive Phase One Trade Deal with China on January 15. The ceremony will take place at the White House. High level representatives of China will be present. At a later date I will be going to Beijing where talks will begin on Phase Two!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 31, 2019
There have been hints that China and the U.S. were nearing an end to their stalemate.
Chinese soybean imports nearly doubled in November, for instance, as China began ratcheting up imports on one of its principal agricultural products. Imports rose more than 50% to 5.4 million tons, AP reported Dec. 26, citing customs data.
China initially nixed purchases of American soybeans after Trump raised import duties on Chinese goods. Critics said Trump’s trade war with China has been a disaster for American farmers.
The tariffs leveled against China have cost Americans an additional $38 billion since February 2018, according to data anti-tariff campaign Tariffs Hurt the Heartland and consulting firm The Trade Partnership released in November.
China, meanwhile, has not released data showing how the trade war has hurt its economy, though more than 50 global companies including Apple, Nintendo and Dell, reportedly rushed to pull production out of China in July, according to CNBC, citing the Nikkei Asian Review.