It has been announced that negotiators from the United States and China will meet in October to discuss trade issues. Following a phone conversation between China’s Vice Premier and U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer Thursday morning, China announced negotiators plan to travel to Washington next month for high-level talks, and will continue consultations through September ahead of that meeting. USDA Undersecretary Ted McKinney says he is optimistic about these efforts.
The announcement from China comes as President Trump told reporters in the Oval Office this week that China wants to reach a deal with the United States. The trade war with China has dropped U.S. ag exports to China from more than $20 billion in 2017, to just $9 billion last year. The announcement ended weeks of speculation on whether the two nations would renew stalled trade talks. So opening negotiations between the two countries is of course welcome news for agriculture.