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Trump touts trade war truce

Updated December 05, 2018

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Beijing has said little on the pact that cheered markets but left many questions unanswered. ─ AFP/File
Beijing has said little on the pact that cheered markets but left many questions unanswered. ─ AFP/File

SHANGHAI: As White House officials fanned out to talk up what US President Donald Trump called “an incredible deal” with China to hit pause in their trade war, Beijing has said little on a pact that cheered markets but left many questions unanswered.

China’s foreign ministry, the only government department that holds a daily briefing foreign media can attend, has repeatedly referred questions on details to the commerce ministry, which has yet to say anything.

The commerce ministry is due to hold its weekly news briefing on Thursday.

A lack of detail from the Chinese side has left investors and analysts wondering if Trump’s exuberance is warranted, and if details touted by the White House but left out of Chinese reporting on the agreement are in question.

One Chinese official told Reuters officials were “waiting for the leaders to return” before publicising details. President Xi Jinping and his most senior officials, including the commerce minister and the country’s two top diplomats, are in Portugal, and due back in China on Thursday.

The White House said China would agree to purchase a not yet agreed, but very substantial, amount of farm, energy, industrial, and other products from the United States.

Published in Dawn, December 5th, 2018

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