Coronavirus not expected to derail China's trade deal commitments: Mnuchin

Treasury secretary says China cutting tariffs in half on some US goods is 'big step in the right direction'


By Evie Fordham, FOXBusiness

Feb 6, 2020


The U.S. expects China to be able to meet its commitments under the "phase one" trade deal, despite a coronavirus that has killed hundreds and closed stores and factories in East Asia, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on "Mornings with Maria" Thursday.


"Based on our current projections of the virus, we're not worried about that," Mnuchin said. "But let me again say we're monitoring the virus carefully. We'll have a much better idea over the next two weeks. ... But based on current information, I don't expect there will be any issues in them fulfilling their commitments."


Hours earlier, China announced it would cut in half tariffs that the country levied in 2019 against 1,717 U.S. goods as part of the "phase one" agreement.


Mnuchin told FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo the move is a "big step in the right direction."


"This is part of China implementing 'phase one,' which is our big focus at this point," he said.


President Trump's chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow said exports in the "phase one" trade deal with China will be slowed down because of the coronavirus on "Mornings with Maria" on Tuesday.


"It is true the 'phase one' trade deal, the export boom from that trade deal, will take longer because of the Chinese virus," Kudlow said. "On the other hand...


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China likely considering disaster clause in Phase 1 deal with U.S. -Global Times


by Se Young Lee, Reuters

Feb 6, 2020


BEIJING, Feb 6 (Reuters) - China is likely considering using a disaster-related clause in its Phase 1 trade deal with the United States due to the coronavirus outbreak that has killed more than 500 and infected tens of thousands, the Global Times reported on Thursday.


The Global Times, published by the official People’s Daily newspaper of China’s ruling Communist Party, cited an unnamed Chinese trade expert close to the government as saying a decision on launching a consultation with the United States on the disaster clause is unlikely until the end of the first quarter.


(Reporting by Se Young Lee; Editing by Tom Hogue)


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