Trump says USA is still talking to China on trade

Markets Are Flashing Signs That Trade Is Back on Top of Risk Radar

Markets Are Flashing Signs That Trade Is Back on Top of Risk Radar

US Congress approval for legislation supporting pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong has also cast a shadow on the ongoing trade talks.

"We strongly urge the USA side to immediately take effective measures to prevent this act from becoming law, immediately stop interfering in Hong Kong affairs and China's other internal affairs".

One of the bill is the S. 1838, which would require annual reviews of Hong Kong's special trade status under USA law and sanction officials deemed responsible for human rights abuses and undermining the city's autonomy.

The measure, which has angered Beijing, would require the State Department to certify at least once a year that Hong Kong retains enough autonomy to qualify for the special U.S. trading consideration that helped it become a world financial center.

The U.S. Senate's move, which has blatantly interfered in Hong Kong affairs and China's other internal affairs, is in serious violation of global law and basic norms governing worldwide relations, and China firmly opposes it, he noted.

Republican Senator Marco Rubio was a main sponsor of the Senate-passed bill, which was co-sponsored by Republican Senator Jim Risch and Democratic Senators Bob Menendez and Ben Cardin. That measure bans the export of items such as tear gas, pepper spray, rubber bullets and stun guns.

The bills now go to Trump for signing.

A so-called "phase one" trade deal could take as long as five weeks to sign, US President Donald Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in October.

Vetoes would have been hard to sustain, since the measures passed both the Republican-controlled Senate and Democratic-controlled House with nearly no objections.

The Chinese embassy in Washington did not respond to a request for comment. "Otherwise, China will have to take strong countermeasures and the USA side must face all the consequences", Ma said.

"China is willing to work with the USA side on the basis of equality and mutual respect to properly address each other's core concerns and strive to reach a phase one agreement", Gao said at a regular briefing.

It said China would "inevitably take vigorous measures to firmly respond, to staunchly safeguard our sovereignty, security and development interests".

Worries that a "phase one" trade deal between the United States and China might not occur until next year weighed on investor sentiment on Wall Street overnight, pulling the S&P 500 down 0.16 per cent to 3,103.54, the Dow Jones down 0.2 per cent to 27,766.29 and the Nasdaq Composite 0.24 per cent lower to 8,506.21.

While many see the act as symbolic, it could alter the nature of relations between the United States and Hong Kong. "But it seems the Chinese haven't so I, we, mustn't", said Greg McKenna, strategist at McKenna Macro.

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