China and US agree to roll back tariffs in phases

China and the US have agreed to proportionally roll back tariffs on each other’s goods in phases, a Ministry of Commerce spokesman said.

The amount of tariff relief that would come in the first phase, set to be signed in the coming weeks, would depend on the content of that agreement, spokesman Gao Feng said Thursday without giving further details.

The two sides had “constructive talks” in the past two weeks, he said.

If confirmed by the U.S., such an understanding could provide a road-map to a deal to end the trade war that’s cast a shadow over the world economy.

China’s key demand since the start of negotiations has been the removal of punitive tariffs imposed by President Donald Trump, which by now apply to the majority of its exports to the U.S.

Stocks rallied, with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index climbing 0.7% and futures on the S&P 500 adding 0.5%. The yuan strengthened.

The two sides continue to negotiate over where and when a “Phase One” deal would be signed. Gao said he had no further information on the location or timing.

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China and US agree to roll back tariffs in phases