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Trump delays tariff increases on Chinese goods ahead of trade talks

President Donald Trump and China's President Xi Jinping (not shown) make a joint statement at the Great Hall of the People on November 9, 2017 in Beijing, China.
Photo: Thomas Peter-Pool/Getty Images

President Trump announced on Twitter Wednesday he would delay the increase on existing tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods ahead of the U.S. resuming trade talks with China.

Why it matters: There's evidence that the U.S.-China trade war has hurt both of the world's 2 leading economies. It's dented consumer sentiment and a survey of members of the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai released Wednesday found 51% said U.S. and Chinese tariffs had a negative effect on revenue.

  • Axios' Neal Rothschild noted this month that Trump's trade war has led to bigger deficits with China, even though it was intended to improve the balance.
  • The International Monetary Fund has said the tensions have weighed down the global economy.

The big picture: The Trump administration and the Chinese government agreed last week to restart trade negotiations in Washington, D.C., in early October. China's economy czar, Vice Premier Liu He, is due to attend the talks.

  • Hours before Trump's tweets, China announced it would exempt 16 types of exported U.S. goods from import tariffs, effective Sept. 17 through Sept. 16, 2020.

The state of play:

  • On Sept. 1, the U.S. imposed a 15% tariff on $112 billion worth of Chinese goods. China retaliated by resuming 25% tariffs on American cars and adding 5–10% tariffs on $75 billion worth of goods.
  • On Oct. 1, Trump was due to increase existing tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods from 25% to 30%. But this has now been delayed by 2 weeks, according to Trump's tweets Tuesday evening.
  • On Dec. 15, the U.S. was set to hit another batch of $160 billion of Chinese imports with 15% tariffs, originally delayed to reduce the impact on Christmas shoppers. China vowed to retaliate with its second batch of tariffs on $75 billion of American goods.

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Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.