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China, U.S. sign phase-one trade deal, adding certainty to global economy
2020-01-17 14:15     Source : Xinhua

China and the United States on Wednesday signed their phase-one economic and trade agreement that both sides said benefits each other and the whole world, a progress welcomed by businesses, investors and observers.

After nearly two years' strenuous negotiations, Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and U.S. President Donald Trump inked the papers at the White House East Room on behalf of their respective countries, injecting stability into bilateral relations and adding certainty to global growth.

It "shows that our two countries have the ability to act on the basis of equality and mutual respect, and work through dialogue and consultation to properly handle and effectively resolve relevant issues," Chinese President Xi Jinping said in a message to Trump read out by the vice premier at the signing ceremony.

GOOD FOR CHINA, U.S., WORLD

The deal is a hard-won phased outcome for the U.S.-initiated trade tensions with China, and the progress shows that the world's two largest economies are seeking a more rational way to break the deadlock and inject positive energy into the stability and development of the world economy.

The Chinese vice premier, in his remarks at the signing ceremony, called the agreement mutually beneficial and of win-win nature. "It will bring about stable economic growth, promote world peace and prosperity, and is in the interest of the producers, consumers, investors in both countries," he said.

Liu, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chief of the Chinese side of the China-U.S. comprehensive economic dialogue, told a briefing with the Chinese press later that day the phase-one deal has to a large extent addressed the concerns of both sides.

The agreement ranges from expanding bilateral trade in such sectors as agricultural products, manufactured goods, energy, and service, further broadening market access, to enhancing the protection of intellectual property rights.

The two sides also agree to establish a bilateral mechanism for two-way assessment and dispute settlement, and the United States has pledged to cancel some of its additional tariffs on Chinese products, marking a policy change from hiking to cutting additional tariffs.

At the signing ceremony, Liu noted that the phase-one deal is in line with the World Trade Organization rules, and that it is neither directed at nor will affect the lawful rights and interests of any third party.

For his part, Trump called the signing of the phase-one deal "remarkable," which is a boon to the United States, China, and the whole world.

Editor: 谭晶