Region/Countries: Asia, China Industry: Agriculture / Timber, Multiple Sectors Date: January 2019

Why this is important to Wisconsin businesses: The talks addressed the trade balance, trade barriers, agricultural trade, intellectual property and technology transfer, among other issues.

A two-day round of talks in Washington at the end of January represents “important progress” for U.S.-China relations, according to a release from the Chinese delegation.

During the two days of talks, Chinese and U.S. negotiators discussed the balanced development of bilateral trade, non-tariff barriers, the service industry, agriculture and enforcement mechanisms, as well as issues of concern to the Chinese side, according to a statement from the Chinese delegation. The two sides have reached consensus in principle on the framework and basic elements of the implementation mechanism, with a plan for continuous improvement.

The statement said both sides attach high importance to intellectual property protections and technology transfer issues, and agreed to ramp up cooperation in that regard; that creating a fair, competitive market environment aligns with China's goals of reform and opening its economy; and that China will actively respond to U.S. concerns.

China plans to vigorously expand imports of U.S. farm produce, energy products, industrial products, manufactured goods and service products to satisfy Chinese consumers’ demand as the economy develops.

President Trump tweeted that no final deal would be made on this talk. He confirmed U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin would lead a U.S. trade delegation to continue talks in China in mid-February. Trump also said that he looks forward to meeting with President Xi at a later date and witnessing the historic moment when the two countries reach an agreement on economic and trade issues.