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White House says China will 'significantly increase' purchases of US goods and services

White House says China will 'significantly increase' purchases of US goods and services
Posted at 1:51 PM, May 19, 2018

After weeks of tensions, China and the United States have reached an initial agreement on trade.

Both parties said in a joint statement on Saturday that China has agreed to "significantly increase" purchases of US goods and services, in order to reduce the trade imbalance between the two countries. This was a top demand of the Trump administration during two days of trade talks in Washington with Chinese officials.

"To meet the growing consumption needs of the Chinese people and the need for high-quality economic development, China will significantly increase purchases of United States goods and services," the statement said. "This will help support growth and employment in the United States."

The pledge for more cooperation comes as the US and China, the world's two largest economies, have threatened tens of billions of dollars in tariffs that could lead to a trade war.

Both sides also agreed to "meaningful increases" in US agriculture and energy exports, the statement said. The US intends to send a team to China to hammer out the details.

The announcement did not put a dollar amount on the commitment from China.

US officials on Thursday told CNN that Beijing had proposed boosting Chinese purchases of American goods by around $200 billion. But at a regular news briefing in Beijing on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang denied such an offer had been made.