China’s Vice Commerce Minister to visit United States for trade talks

China: Trade talks with the US are back on

The announcement by the Chinese commerce ministry of the planned meeting in late August comes after a lull in talks between the two sides.

The visit is at the invitation of the United States, the ministry said in a short statement.

China announced Thursday that it will send a delegation to the USA later this month for trade negotiations, after the two countries started imposing tit-for-tat tariffs on goods from each other and Washington tightened controls on investment.

China will dispatch Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen to the United States for trade talks in late August, the first official exchanges since earlier negotiations broke down two months ago.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 15 cents, or 0.2 percent, at $65.17 a barrel, held back somewhat by rising U.S. crude production and storage levels.

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Sentiment in oil markets was also cautious due to the rise in USA crude production and storage levels, as well as weakness in emerging market economies, particularly in Asia, that could limit demand growth. Worries about damage to the global economy from the dispute have hurt prices, which hit their lowest since June 2017 overnight.

After negotiations in Washington in May, Beijing believed it had assurances from the USA that tariffs were off the table, with Mnuchin saying the trade war and tariffs were "on hold".

But the discussions failed to reduce tensions as the United States slapped tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods in early July, triggering an immediate dollar-for-dollar retaliation from Beijing.

Washington is due to activate additional tariffs on $16 billion of Chinese goods on August 23, and Beijing has said it will respond in kind.

The U.S. Treasury Department led by Steven Mnuchin has been viewed as most opposed to tariffs among key Trump administration agencies, espousing a more moderate approach to China than trade hardliners such as USTR's Robert Lighthizer.

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